We are overwhelmed by the unquestionable strength and character of our school communities during this challenging time. Our schools remain encouraged by the outpouring of support we have received from you in providing a safe environment and the positive attitudes from your children in unique circumstances. Your messages of gratitude, acts of generosity and words of encouragement are powerful affirmations for our team of dedicated teaching and support staff.
You will be aware that all schools are now being asked to take a step further in responding to this pandemic, while continuing to provide learning for all our pupils. Shortly before the closure for Christmas the Government announced that mass lateral flow testing for secondary age pupils will commence from January 4th, with a view to this expanding to the primary sector later in the spring. To put this massive task in context, the Government’s Schools’ Minister has said that "It is very important that we are testing 5.5 million students twice, three days apart, to make sure we are breaking the transmission of the virus after the increased mixing over the Christmas holidays." This periodic regular testing will continue for some time.
We cannot tackle this massive challenge alone and I am writing during this season when we all normally come together with our family and friends to ask for your support. We find ourselves in need of a team of volunteers at each of our schools who know our communities to work alongside school staff in undertaking this testing programme.
We have limited information to share with you at this stage but the link below will take you to guidance produced by the NHS which has been released as an interim measure.
Nothing is more important than ensuring the health and safety of our pupils, the community and our workforce. What I would ask of our parents, families and colleagues is would they consider being able to find a few hours a week to become a Covid-19 team volunteer. Volunteers would support testing alongside school staff whilst we continue to focus on lessons for our pupils who have missed so much time prior to our return in September.
We await further guidance to be issued and I would ask if this is something you feel you would like to know more about, please complete the expression of interest form below.
Full training, support and a positive friendly environment would be in place and any time you can offer for the key roles would be appreciated.