Due to the high rates of infection across the south west, Cornwall (and Devon) have been moved to an Enhanced Response Area (ERA) by central government. Our Aspire Health & Safety team has been consulting with, and takingthe most up-to-date advice from, Public Health England, the Department for Education and the Cornwall Local Authority teams.
We will continue to monitor COVID-19 rates across the Trust in the autumn term 2021 which means a positive PCR result within your household should still be reported ASAP to your child(ren)’s school via telephone or email (term time only - during school opening hours).
Although key restrictions in education have now been lifted, please be aware that should there be a local outbreak, bubbles, and other protective measures, may be temporarily reintroduced if advised to do so by the South West Protection Team.
Since 8th March 2021, attendance is mandatory for all pupils of compulsory school age. Consequently, the Aspire Academy Trust attendance procedure, pre-COVID-19, should be adhered to. Click HERE for the current Aspire Attendance Policy.
UPDATED: Due to the current high levels of COVID-19 cases and additional government support requirements in Cornwall following the summer holidays, staff and visitors are requested to wear face coverings in communal areas of the school.
Testing in schools
Primary age pupils are NOT being tested with LFDs. Public Health England has advised there are currently limited public health benefits attached to testing primary pupils with lateral flow devices. Primary age pupils may find the LFD testing process unpleasant and are unable to self-swab. All staff in primary schools will continue to test with LFDs twice a week at home, as per existing guidance.
Testing outside schools
PHE do not recommend the use of LFD tests on children under the age of 11 years.
Whole families and households with primary school, secondary school and college age children, including childcare and support bubbles, are able to test themselves twice every week from home.
Please note, schools are not be expected to provide the test kits to families or administer the family testing process. Test kits can be ordered online at the link below:
Should any parent, child or staff member of an Aspire academy display any symptoms of COVID-19, they are strongly encouraged to book a test. Tests can be booked through the NHS’s testing and tracing website HERE. Should test results be negative and the person feels well with no symptoms similar to COVID-19, they can stop self-isolating.
If someone tests positive, they must continue to self-isolate for at least 10 days from the onset of their symptoms and then return to normal routine only if they do not have symptoms other than cough or loss of smell/ taste. The 10-day period starts from the day when they first became ill. If they still have a high temperature, they should keep self-isolating until their temperature returns to normal.
Please note: Adults who are double vaccinated/children under the age of 18 are now not required to self-isolate.
Test & Trace
Education settings are no longer expected to undertake contact tracing and NHS Test and Trace has taken over.
However, so our Health & Safety team can continue to monitor COVID-19 rates across the Trust for the new autumn term, a positive PCR result within your household should still be reported ASAP to your child(ren)’s school via telephone or email (only during term time/school opening hours).
The Aspire Academy Trust remains actively engaged with the NHS’s Test and Trace protocols.
UPDATED: Individuals are not required to self-isolate if they live in the same household as someone with COVID-19, or are a close contact of someone with COVID-19, and any of the following apply:
- they are fully vaccinated
- they are below the age of 18 years and 6 months
- they have taken part in or are currently part of an approved COVID-19 vaccine trial
- they are not able to get vaccinated for medical reasons
Instead, they will be contacted by NHS Test and Trace, informed they have been in close contact with a positive case and advised to take a PCR test. Please take a PCR test if advised to do so and remember, PHE do NOT recommend the use of LFD tests on children under the age of 11 years.
Robust health and safety measures remain in place in every Aspire academy. This includes frequent hand washing, regular hygiene reminders throughout the school day (particularly the ‘catch it, bin it, kill it’ approach) and thorough whole school cleaning procedures at the end of each day.
Free School Meals
We will continue to provide FSM food vouchers for pupils eligible for benefits-related free school meals who have received a COVID-19 positive test and are therefore isolating at home. This voucher is only issued to the affected (i.e. positive test) pupil.
FSM vouchers for pupils eligible for benefits-related free school meals will be issued via Wonde for the October half term 2021 period.
Cornwall Council is continuing to process new applications for Free School Meals. Please ensure you read the eligibility criteria HERE before applying. Please complete the ONLINE APPLICATION FORM (also available via the link below) if you are eligible. The Local Authority is not currently accepting applications in hard copy by post. If you are unable to apply online, please call the Free School Meals team on 01872 323298 and a member of the team will call you back to complete the application over the phone. Please make sure your phone will accept calls from a private / withheld number.
If your financial circumstances have changed during the pandemic, you may be entitled to Free School Meals. Please follow the link below and complete the online form.
If you receive a notification confirming your entitlement, please email the Aspire Academy Trust at email@example.com
Should a child/children need to isolate and stay at home, but remain well enough to access learning, the academy will provide remote education that meets the same quality and quantity of that education that pupils would receive in school. Please visit your child(ren)'s academy website for details of the online learning programme.
For IT support, please click on the link below:
Extra-curricular clubs/wraparound care
For a majority of Aspire academies, afterschool clubs and breakfast/afterschool wraparound care will continue as normal. Please be aware however that while case rates remain high in Cornwall, it is possible that staff shortages may cause some disruption. Please contact your child(ren)'s academy directly for more information.
For the BBC Coronavirus (COVID-19) news page, click on the link below:
For an NHS overview on the Coronavirus (COVID-19), please visit the website below:
The Aspire Academy Trust remains vigilant and alert to the ongoing threat of COVID-19 infection to our school communities. While we welcome a return to (almost) normality this autumn term, we must all continue to follow public health advice and stay alert. Thank you for your co-operation and understanding.
Page updated: 14th October 2021