15 October 2020
We received notification on Thursday 15th October of a confirmed case of Covid-19 associated with the school. The student and their family are both well and we have passed on our best wishes. They are currently self-isolating.
We contacted the Department for Education/Public Health England immediately and followed their instructions about the steps that we needed to take in order to manage further risk. The confirmed case relates to a Year 13 student and we worked quickly and closely with the DfE/PHE to identify the small number of students who had been in ‘confirmed close contact’ with the student based upon individual seating plans. That does not mean that either the 6th form bubble or individual classes have been sent home, just those with confirmed close contact from Monday 12th October until Tuesday 13th October 2020. At all points, we have followed the instruction that we have been given and have contacted all affected families immediately. We have also worked with the students affected directly to offer them support and any additional help that they may need.
It is important to note that local regulations are in place in County Durham because of an increase in transmission in the North East. We have acted diligently within our risk assessment and have acted very quickly and sensibly when a case has been confirmed. I’m aware of the very real anxieties that many families feel and wanted to reassure you that we have acted in accordance with the advice given and have communicated quickly with all those affected. It is not necessary for all Year 13 students to stay at home. We have identified all of the confirmed close contacts in school, but please contact us if you have any questions.
The wearing of face coverings is mandatory in communal areas at school and we have clear routines in place for each part of the school day. We are also constantly reminding students about the importance of good hygiene. Please reiterate all of these points at home too. Please read the following letter for general Public Health England guidance: click here to read.