We have now been made aware of eleven Covid cases in Year 6, as of Saturday afternoon. Further to our decision on Friday (when there were five known cases) to offer the children either the option of learning at home or to attend school as part of a class “bubble” separate from the remainder of the school, this further significant increase in cases unfortunately means that we must now take further action.
As a result, we have made the decision that all children in Year 6 should not attend for in-school learning on Monday 17th January. Instead, children must complete the Yr6 learning posted at http://high-firs.kent.sch.uk/absencelearning/ and return this to Miss Allin via email or in person on return. This includes those children who have tested positive but who are well enough to still undertake some learning tasks.
This will hopefully create a “circuit break” should any further cases develop as a result of contact on Thursday and Friday, as well as safeguarding the rest of our school community. We will be contacting the Public Health Authority in order to determine what action, if any, they would recommend we take from Tuesday 18th onwards.
We will also be taking advice as to when children who are self-isolating due to having Covid may return to school. Although the guidance now indicates that self-isolation may end after five days if negative LFD results are obtained on days 5&6, it also states that until day 10 close contact, enclosed spaces and contact with those who are vulnerable must be avoided. Bearing in mind the current case load and that these provisos are very difficult to ensure in our school community, it may be that other measures also have to be put in place.
Siblings of Yr6 children with Covid may attend school but we would ask that they undertake daily LFD tests. Alternatively, we will authorise their absence if you prefer them to stay at home on Monday 17th and complete the home learning for their class at http://high-firs.kent.sch.uk/absencelearning/ instead.
No action is currently required for other children in other classes as there are no current concerns.
We know that this will cause inconvenience and concern for some of our families and we do apologise for this. However, this decision has not been taken lightly and it is essential that we take action in order to minimise further infection of both our Year 6 pupils & staff and the rest of our school community. We have therefore communicated this to you as soon as we can in order that you can make plans where necessary and we will continue to keep you updated as soon as we can regarding Tuesday 18th and moving ahead.