12 March 2021
Home testing for students who do not have symptoms of Covid-19
Around 1 in 3 people who have coronavirus (COVID-19) have no symptoms. By rolling out rapid testing to students, we are helping to uncover hidden cases of the virus, break the chains of transmission and stopping outbreaks before they get a chance to develop. For clarity, the tests are not mandatory.
The school has now received supplies of home test kits for students. These will be issued to all students from 15.03.21, in accordance with DFE guidance. We will ask all students to take kits home to parents / carers. This will enable parents either to begin using the test kits or to return any kits they do not intend to use, to the school.
All students should have adult supervision when conducting swabbing and the test process. Children under 12 years may also be tested at home.
Students over 16 years may decide whether to use the kits for themselves but should still receive adult supervision when conducting the test.
Each student will be given two kits, containing 6 tests (enough to undertake testing at home for 3 weeks). They will also receive hard copy instructions on how to use the tests. The DFE advise that the instructions for coronavirus (COVID-19) self-testing are available online in English and 12 other languages. The translations can be found at this link.
For more information: Understanding Lateral Flow Testing.
We strongly advise students and parents to watch the video guides below:
An NHS introductory video guide to rapid lateral flow testing.
Reporting your test
Please contact the school if a test result is positive. Do NOT contact the school if a result is negative or void.
You should report your results online straight away, even if your result is negative or void. It’s easy to do at the following link: Report your results.
Results can also be reported via telephone by calling 119 (free from mobiles and landlines). Lines are open every day, 7am to 11pm.
Confirmatory PCR testing following a test at home
LFD tests taken on test sites, such as on school grounds, do not need a confirmatory PCR test. This is because these tests are done in a controlled environment and trained staff read the results.
If a pupil or student received a supervised school-based LFD test, as part of the rapid asymptomatic testing programme, and it was positive then they and other members of their household must self-isolate for a period of 10 days. Online educational provision is available for students who must self-isolate.
PCR testing is not advised if you have received a positive result from an LFD test at a school test site. If a parent was to do this and it returned a negative result, the DFE policy remains that the student, their close contacts, and other members of their household must continue to self-isolate for the full period of 10 days.
All positive results from rapid tests undertaken at home do need to be confirmed with a standard PCR test. The DFE advise this is because these tests are not conducted in a controlled environment and will not have trained staff on hand.
Following positive LFD test at home, a confirmatory PCR test should be booked online or by calling 119. Whilst awaiting the PCR result, the pupil or student and their close contacts should self-isolate. If the PCR test is negative, it overrides the self-test LFD test (at home only) and a child can return to school.
Children who have any of the symptoms of Covid-19 (new cough, loss of smell or taste, fever) must not come to school and must be tested via a PCR test which can be booked online or by calling 119. Whilst awaiting the PCR result, the pupil or student and their close contacts should self-isolate.