Perhaps inevitably, as we watch cases across our region, we have had a confirmed case of COVID-19 within the Sixth Form student body of our school.

Naturally, all of us will find this concerning but rest assured we are continuing to monitor the situation and are working closely with Public Health England. They have advised to ensure we update you on the current situation and provide advice on how to support your child. It is important to remember that for most people, coronavirus (COVID-19) will be a mild illness.

The small number of children who have been in direct prolonged contact with the individual confirmed to have tested positive for COVID-19 have been contacted directly and will be staying at home for 14 days. We have also taken precautionary steps with other children.

Naturally, our school remains open and your child should continue to attend if they remain well. This case has been isolated by our bubble system and your child is very unlikely to have had any contact whatsoever with those affected .

What are the COVID symptoms ?

The most common symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19) are recent onset of:

§  a new continuous cough

§  a high temperature

§  a loss of, or change in, your normal sense of taste or smell (anosmia)

Currently, we have a virus going around the school that presents itself with a congested nose, a sore throat and sneezing – it is important to recognise that though unpleasant these are not classic COVID-19 symptoms.

However, if you  are unsure, or your child or anyone in the household does develop symptoms, you can seek advice from NHS 111 at or by phoning 111.

What do I do my child develops symptoms of COVID19 ?

If your child develops symptoms of COVID-19, they must not come into school and should remain at home for at least 10 days from the date when their symptoms appeared. Anyone with symptoms should seek a test and this can be arranged via or by calling 119. Our experience of local testing sites so far – including Cannock, Tamworth, Stafford and Burton – has been very positive.

All other household members who remain well must stay at home and not leave the house for 14 days. This includes anyone in your ‘Support Bubble’.

Further information is available at:

The 14-day period starts from the day when the first person in the house became ill.

Household members should not go to work, school or public areas and exercise should be taken within the home only.

If you require help with buying groceries, other shopping or picking up medication, or walking a dog, you should ask friends or family. Alternatively, you can order your shopping online and medication by phone or online.

Household members staying at home for 14 days will greatly reduce the overall amount of infection the household could pass on to others in the community.

If you are able, move any vulnerable individuals (such as the elderly and those with underlying health conditions) out of your home, to stay with friends or family for the duration of the home isolation period.

How to stop COVID-19 spreading ?

There are things you can do to help reduce the risk of you and anyone you live with getting ill with COVID-19


§  wash your hands with soap and water often – do this for at least 20 seconds

§  use hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available

§  wash your hands as soon as you get home

§  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 and wash your hands afterwards

Additionally, we would strengthen our already strong advice to wear face masks in communal areas, such as corridors, as though the risk is low, it does provide an extra layer of protection. Even so, at this stage we not making them mandatory. We meet regularly with all other local secondary schools and have the same stance as all of them. Equally, having been in dialogue with Public Health England on our current live case, their focus is not on who passes who in a corridor, but who has had face-to-face or 15mins sustained contact beside a confirmed case.

If the situation changes, or our district becomes higher risk and faces more strenuous restrictions, then we would be ready to take this step. However, at the moment, we are not prepared to exclude a child because they do not wear a mask or because their parents do not want them to wear a mask.

How can I support the school ?

We really value your support in dealing with the challenge of COVID-19 and the messages and feedback are hugely appreciated.

Even so, with the increased likelihood of more cases coming through the winter months, we would appreciate your patience and support when rumours start to fly. This first incident saw a post on social media result in eight parents calling in to insist that they spoke to our Headteacher to confirm the case, to advise him on what the guidance said, and to enquire as to what he was doing about it. Unfortunately, this took up a great deal of time, meant he missed Public Health England’s initial call back, and delayed his overseeing of the withdrawal of targeted students to mitigate risk.

Please rest assured if there is an issue then we will deal with it and if there is anything to tell you then we will communicate with you. This message is reaching on the same day as the case became ‘live’ and if we can use the time we have to act quickly then we can further mitigate risk. Amidst it all, the Headteacher understand where the buck stops, and would be grateful to be granted a fighting chance of cracking on to deal with the real problem.

Naturally, we appreciate there are always questions and worries, so we have set up a specific email address – the unfortunately titled – where queries can be sent into and our Headteacher will take the time to personally respond to all of them. We are hoping that most issues will be addressed in our weekly COVID-19 updates but we recognise that sometimes questions can be very specific.

Elsewhere, if your email details have changed we would appreciate you letting us know. Each single-side, 2nd class letter we send out across our school costs £600 and we would much rather spend that money on resources and support. If you can help us to go electronic, we can invest more in your child’s education and reach you with information more quickly and efficiently.

Further Information

Further information on COVID-19 is available at

Further information and updates about our COVID-19 approach and measures is available at or our Facebook or Twitter platforms.