16/03/2020 · News
Coronavirus, what to do and what we’ve been doing
Department for Education Coronavirus helpline and advice
Today, have launched a new helpline to answer questions about COVID-19 related to education. Staff, parents and young people can contact the helpline as follows:
Phone: 0800 046 8687
Opening hours: 8am to 6pm (Monday to Friday)
|· No school should close in response to a suspected (or confirmed) COVID-19 case unless directed to do so by Public Health England.|
Dear Parents and Carers,
Update on response to Coronavirus / Covid-19
This information has been sent following the updated Government guidance today.
The government advice is if any pupils or staff members develop symptoms, as listed below, they must stay at home for seven days: –
The link to the government advice:- https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-stay-at-home-guidance/stay-at-home-guidance-for-people-with-confirmed-or-possible-coronavirus-covid-19-infection
No school should close in response to a suspected (or confirmed) COVID-19 case unless directed to do so by Public Health England.
The most common symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19) are recent onset of:
- New continuous cough, and/or high temperature
- A high temperature above 37.8 degrees centigrade
For most people, coronavirus (COVID-19) will be a mild infection.
- If you have symptoms of coronavirus infection (COVID-19), however mild, do not leave your home for 7 days from when your symptoms started.
- This action will help protect others in your community while you are infectious
- Plan ahead and ask others for help to ensure that you can successfully stay at home
- Ask your employer, friends and family to help you get the things you need to stay at home
- Stay at least 2 metres (about 3 steps) away from other people in your home if possible
- Sleep alone, if possible
- Wash your hands regularly for 20 seconds, each time using soap and water
- Stay away from vulnerable individuals, such as the elderly and those with underlying health conditions, as much as possible
- You do not need to call NHS 111 to go into self-isolation. If your symptoms worsen during home isolation or are no better after 7 days, contact NHS 111 online. If you have no internet access, call NHS 111. For a medical emergency dial 999
If anyone becomes ill during the school day, they will also be sent home and asked to remain at home for 7 days.
We will continue to prioritise handwashing and hygiene routines for all.
These measures are designed to reduce the peak, increase the delay and ease pressures on the NHS. Please support this government initiative to delay the virus and if you have new symptoms, please do not come to nursery/preschool.
We are continuing to take measures against the spread of all illnesses, in support of the government strategy to contain Coronavirus as soon as possible. At this point, our focus continues to be around general hygiene.
To date, we have: –
- Displayed diagrams showing effective handwashing in all the toilets.
- Bought a lot of extra soap and hand sanitisers
- We ensure children wash their hands regularly and give each child a squirt of hand sanitiser periodically.
- Talked to the children about sneezing into a tissue (or your elbow if you don’t have one on you), and explained that they should then scrunch it up and throw it in a bin immediately
- Introduced new fun techniques to help educate the children (especially pre-school age) of the importance of handwashing.
- Ensured that the staff / cleaners are cleaning ‘frequent touch zones’ daily (i.e. door push pads, handles, handrails, light switches, toilet flushes, taps etc)
- Telephone pads / Ipad screens / keyboards, etc are wiped daily
We are sent regular advice from various resources, including the Depart of Education (DoE) and Public Health England (PHE) about the status of Covid-19 and what childcare providers and parents need to do. We will share any updated information with you.
Our main priority during these uncertain times is to keep business as usual as much as possible whilst taking on board the advice we are being given. We have taken the decision to introduce some new procedures / policies to try to reduce the risk of potential spread of Covid-19, as follows: –
- Closed Door Policy – Until further notice, all our settings will be adopting a closed-door policy, whereby children will be greeted in and seen out at the main door or entrance area, depending on site access. Appointments can be made with the Manager if you wish to speak to them or your child’s keyworker about any matters in detail.
- Random temperature tests will be taken using a non-contact thermometer, if children have a temperature over the government guideline of 37.8 degrees centigrade, they will be sent home and self-isolation of 7 days will be required.
- General appointments such as parent partnership meetings etc will not be arranged until such time that is seen as appropriate.
- Upcoming ‘Dates in the Diary’, such as Easter celebrations, will remain in the diary but nearer the time please accept that these may be cancelled at the last minute.
HOW YOU CAN HELP
- Continue to follow the government guidelines at each stage. Currently, if you or your child show any of the symptoms shown above then please keep your child away from nursery/pre-school and self-isolate for 7 days. Please advise your nursery/pre-school manager by text or email or the office at email@example.com advising us with as much information as possible. We appreciate that this will be sensitive information to you but please trust that we will treat all information strictly private and confidential, the more information we have will hopefully help us to act appropriately as and when the information is received.
- Respect the 14-day exclusion period from nursery / pre-school if at any time you and your family visit any of the category 1 or category 2 countries, see the Government updates on their website for this information.
- If in doubt, call 111 and follow the NHS guidance given.
- Consider avoiding potentially high-risk areas/events such as soft play areas, birthday parties etc
- Please be aware that if staffing numbers are affected at any time, we will initially look to relocate our current team members appropriately or employ qualified agency staff. If at any time we are unable to cover the required staff to children ratio then we will need to contact parents and ask children to be either kept at home or collected from nursery/pre-school.
- Avoid speculation where possible, just because people maybe seen self-isolating doesn’t mean that they have contracted Covid-19, they are following the government guidelines. We will advise you IF a case has been confirmed at the nursery/pre-school that your child attends.
Please continue to follow the previous guidelines provided: –
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze
- Put used tissues in the bin immediately
- Wash your hands with soap and water often – use hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available
- Try to avoid close contact with people who are unwell
- Do not touch your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are not clean
Please act responsibly and contact us immediately about any related health concerns. In brief, please let us know ASAP if: –
- You have been in contact with a suspected or confirmed case of Covid-19.
- You or your child are experiencing any of the symptoms mentioned and your child will not be attending for the 7-day self-isolation period.
- You or your child will not be attending following the 14-day exclusion period further to a visit to a category 1 or category 2 country.
- You have recently travelled abroad, stating which country you have visited and the dates, to and from.
- You have upcoming plans to travel abroad, advising us of the destination and dates, to and from.
This information can be provided in strictest confidence to either your setting manager by text or email or by emailing the head office at firstname.lastname@example.org
We thank you, in advance, for your help with this complex situation.
The Blossom Years team