COVID-19 Update - 24th January

Dear Parents

Almost all of our children and staff have returned after having COVID and it was good to see everyone again. We continue encourage parents to be mindful of the main symptoms:

  • a high temperature

  • a new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot, for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours

  • a loss or change to sense of smell or taste – this means they cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal

If you or your child has any of the main symptoms of COVID-19, even if they're mild:

  • Get a PCR test to check if they have COVID-19 as soon as possible.

  • Your child should stay at home and not have visitors (self-isolate) until you get the test result – they can only leave home to have the test.

If you are unsure as to whether your child might have COVID-19 or has another illness, you are encouraged err on the side of caution and to call 111 for advice.

Last week, the government announced the lifting of the measures put in place under plan B in England. Their advice is that "you should continue to follow safer behaviours to protect yourself and others:

  • Get vaccinated and get your booster dose

  • Wear a face covering in most indoor public places and on public transport

  • Let fresh air in if you meet indoors. Meeting outdoors is safer

  • Get tested and self-isolate if required".

At The Barn, we will mostly be continuing as we have been this term, although we will no longer ask parents to wear a face mask when queuing to collect your children. As always, we continue to encourage everyone to be cautious, because we know first hand that this virus is highly contagious.

Changes to the self-isolation period for those who test positive for COVID-19

  • From Monday 17 January, people who are self-isolating with COVID-19 will have the option to reduce their isolation period after 5 full days if they test negative with a lateral flow device (LFD) test on both day 5 and day 6 and they do not have a temperature. For example, if they test negative on the morning of day 5 and the morning of day 6, they can return to their education or childcare setting immediately on day 6.

  • The first test must be taken no earlier than day 5 of the self-isolation period, and the second must be taken the following day. All test results should be reported to NHS Test and Trace before individuals return to their job or education.

  • If the result of either of their tests is positive, they should continue to self-isolate until they get negative results from two LFD tests on consecutive days or until they have completed 10 full days of self-isolation, whichever is earliest.

  • Those who leave self-isolation on or after day 6 are advised to wear face coverings and limit close contact with other people in crowded or poorly ventilated spaces, work from home if they can do so and minimise contact with anyone who is at higher risk of severe illness if infected with COVID-19.

  • Anyone who is unable to take LFD tests or anyone who continues to have a temperature will need to complete the full 10 day period of self-isolation.

  • The default self-isolation period continues to be 10 days, and you may only leave self-isolation early if you have taken 2 rapid lateral flow tests and do not have a temperature in line with guidance.

Further information on self-isolation for those with COVID-19 is available.

Kind regards

Sharon and Rebecca