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St Andrew's Academy

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FAQ's (Frequently Asked Questions)


Do you still have to wear masks at school?

Our students were all exempt from wearing masks unless they wanted to, so that hasn't changed. Staff do not have to wear masks in the classroom unless they want to as this can affect teaching and learning. Staff are still wearing masks in communal areas.

Are groups going out now?

Yes, small groups are going out to public places sticking to the rule of 6 and staying in open areas like parks.

What is happening about the Lateral Flow Testing in school?

Rapid tests have been available in school to staff since January, and we have had 100% negative results.

Home Test Kits have been given to all students and staff who wish to take part. These tests should be done on a Wednesday evening and a Sunday evening. There is a guidebook on how to register the results to the government. You only need to let the school know if you get a positive result.

What happens about transport if my child has to self-isolate?

We will contact the Transport Teams, but this message may not get to the taxi drivers in time, so please also contact your child's taxi driver to let them know when they will be off and when they will return.

Why do you let us know at such short notice about shutting bubbles?

Unfortunately, we get notified of a confirmed COVID-19 case at any time of day or night and we need to act swiftly, we try our upmost to share information as quickly and efficiently as possible. We understand this can be frustrating and appreciate organising childcare can be difficult. We are grateful for your support in trying to keep our whole school community as safe as possible as soon as possible. Please check your texts, emails, school app and school website to get the latest information. 

Why can't I book a test for my child and finish the isolation before the 10 days?

The 10 day isolation period for everyone that comes into close contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19 is government advice. This is because it can take 10 days for symptoms to appear, so you cannot end the 10 day period by having a negative test result. You need to continue to isolate for 10 days even if you have a negative test result within this 10 day period.

Am I allowed to go to work and my other children go to school when my child has to self-isolate?

Only the people that came into close contact with the positive COVID-19 case need to self-isolate. Other household members of students self-isolating do not need to self-isolate, unless they develop symptoms. Anyone that develops symptoms in your household needs to isolate for 10days from when the symptoms were first displayed and book a test.

What does close contact mean?

The government definition of close contact can be found on their website CLICK HERE

What happens about school work if my child has to self isolate?

During this period of unusual and uncertain times where bubbles may need to be closed at very short notice, class school work can be found on your child's class page if you feel this is suitable for your child during any periods of isolation. As a school we understand this may not be suitable for all students but we welcome any feedback from parents which can be sent directly to the class team via the class email address or contact form found on the class page.

What if my child has a cold?

If your child has a cold and you would normally send them in to school, you should continue to send them in to school. If they have a cold and are too unwell to attend school, you must notify the school each day that your child is not in school. 

If your child has COVID-19 symptoms, you must self-isolate, arrange to have a test, and notify the school.

What happens if someone has symptoms of COVID-19?

Many of our students would not be able to express that they are suffering from symptoms. It is the staff working with them who will monitor each student. If a student begins to present with symptoms such as:

  • A high temperature (this means hot to touch on chest or back, clammy, red cheeked, or above 37.8 °C)
  • A new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot, for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours
  • A loss or change to sense of smell or taste – this means they cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal

They will be moved to the medical room with a member of staff wearing appropriate PPE whilst their parent/carer is phoned to collect them. The student should self-isolate for 10 days and arrange to have a test, their fellow household members should self-isolate for 10 days.

What will classes look like?

The government guidelines state settings should assess their circumstances and look to implement ‘bubbles’ of an appropriate size, to achieve the greatest reduction in contact and mixing, without unduly limiting the quality of breadth of teaching, or access for support and specialist staff and therapists. This means we have changed our bubble groups back to classes instead of departments:

Bubble 1 – Orkney

Bubble 2 - Bute

Bubble 3 - Lewis

Bubble 4 - Barra

Bubble 5 - Stronsay

Bubble 6 - Taransay

Bubble 7 - Mull

Bubble 8 - Skye

Bubble 9 - Jura

Bubble 10 - Iona

Bubble 11 - Campus - Shetland, Arran and Islay

Will there be staggered start and finish times?

Unfortunately we are not in a position to do this because of the nature of how our students are grouped and transported it wouldn't be possible. Please CLICK HERE for the guidance.

Will my child still get transport when they go to school?

Yes. Students are being transported with other students in their bubbles.

Derby City Transport and Derbyshire Transport have made adjustments to their provision.

  • Making sure transport providers do not work if they or a member of their household are displaying any symptoms of coronavirus
  • Making sure transport providers, as far as possible, follow hygiene rules and try to keep distance from their passengers and wipe down vehicles after every journey.
  • Taking appropriate actions to reduce risk if hygiene rules and social distancing is not possible, for example when transporting children and young people with complex needs who need support to access the vehicle or fasten seatbelts.
  • Reducing the number of passengers per vehicle and increase the amount of space between passengers
  • Wearing face coverings

If you are transporting your child yourself, please arrive by 8.50am - and collect your child from 2.50pm. Each car will wait whilst the car/minibus at the front empties and leaves until the last vehicle has left. This will be the same on leaving school, each vehicle will queue up, the one at the front will be filled, then leave, then the next filled and leave until all vehicles have left. If you are walking into school to drop off or collect your child, please stand at the markers on the floor to the side of reception and wait for a member of staff to direct your child from/to you.

Will my child be safe in school?

We have followed and continue to follow all government guidance. To read our changes in school please CLICK HERE.