Mass Testing and Student Return to Academy

Wilmington Academy logo

Dear Parent/Carer,

I hope this letter finds you and your families all safe and well.

Further to the Prime Minister’s announcement on lifting current restrictions with all students returning to face-to-face education during the week commencing Monday 8 March,  I am sure you are already aware the Department for Education has announced the following:

  • All secondary school and college students will take Covid-19 tests as they return. After an initial programme of three opportunities for tests in school, after which students will be provided with two rapid tests to use each week at home. Testing at the academy is an important step in being upskilled to use rapid testing once our site testing has finished.

  • Protective measures will be strengthened. Staff and students in secondary schools are advised to wear face coverings in all areas, including classrooms, where social distancing cannot be maintained.  This has been announced as a temporary extra measure until at least Easter.

At Wilmington Academy, to minimise the disruption and assist with the smooth transition students will return to school on the following basis.

Return Date

Year Group

Monday 8 March*

Year 11 & Post 16 only 

Tuesday 9 March

Year 9 & Year 10 including the above 

Wednesday 10 March

Year 7 & Year 8 including the above 

(Please note that catering facilities will not be re-commencing until Thursday 11 March, therefore you will need to supply a packed lunch.)

Full school uniform and expectations as per our Academy Behaviour policy will apply on students return to school.

We will be commencing student lateral flow testing prior to the 8 March. These will be carried out on Wednesday 3 March, Thursday 4 March and Friday 5 March. Students are invited to attend a specific time slot (see below) to take a Lateral Flow Test and must go straight home afterwards.  Students will not be expected to wear our academy uniform on these days but will need to wear a face mask on site.  In addition, students’ Digital Engagement Scores will not be affected by students attending to take a test. Senior leaders and staff will be on site to supervise.

Please Note: Year 11/P16 Students will need to bring a mobile phone with them if possible to support testing registration

Wednesday 3 March

(Y11/P16)

Thursday 4 March

(Y9/Y10)

Friday 5 March

(Y7/Y8)

Time

Tutor Group

Time

Tutor Group

Time

Tutor Group

9.00

A1, A2, A3 

9.00

A4, A5, A6 

9.00

A10, A11, A12

9.45

J1, J2, J3

9.45

J4, J5, J6

9.45

J10, J11, J12

10.30

M1, M2, M3

10.30

M4, M5, M6

10.30

M10, M11, M12

11.30

S1, S2, S3, S4

11.30

A7, A8, A9

11.30

A13, A14, A15

12.15

S5, S6, S7

12.15

J7, J8, J9

12.15

J13, J14, J15

1.30

S8, S9, S10

1.30

M7, M8, M9

1.30

M13, M14, M15

Please note that normal school transport will not operate in this period. To support the testing process you may wish to choose to utilise local test centres to supplement our provision.

Testing will take place in the Sports Hall, and students should arrive at the external Sports Hall entrance.  The process is as follows:

  1. Students must sanitize their hands and blow their nose before proceeding to the Registration Desk.  (Sanitiser and tissues provided).
  2. Collect a test registration card from the Registration Desk.
  3. Queue (socially distanced) for the Lateral Flow Device test to be conducted. Those taking the test will be supervised by Health Care Assistants.  The ‘lateral flow’ tests are quick and easy using a swab of the nose and/or throat.
  4. After the test – students need to return home immediately.
  5. The result of the test will then be communicated electronically once the result is processed.

We will send further information, including a link to the NHS instructional video regarding Lateral Flow Device tests prior to testing commencing.

In order for a student to be tested, it is imperative that the consent form is completed as soon as possible, as without this we cannot proceed with administering a test (Please see the relevant links).

Under 16: https://forms.gle/wsv85E9oY9bLgjda9 – Years 7-10/11

16+: https://forms.gle/jJANE4TnmtynEvZAA Years 11-13

If you have already consented for your child to have the test as they are attending the academy as part of the Key Worker/Vulnerable Provision, you do not need to consent for a second time.  For under 18s, staff can oversee the swab process (testing of course will be free of charge).

Where participants are under 16, results will be directly shared with parents/carers.

Following the 3 tests on site, students are expected to facilitate their own tests twice a week at home. I would encourage students to access the opportunity of learning how to self administer from the Health Care Assistants that are on site during their 3 tests. Once the academy has received more information on how the home testing will operate we will be in touch.

There is  further information available on the Leigh Academies Trust website about asymptomatic testing you can access via the following link:

https://sites.google.com/latrust.org.uk/covid-19-parent-portal

If you have any further questions or require clarification, please do not hesitate to contact the academy.

Yours faithfully,

Mr M Gore | Principal