Back to school

School-related FAQ

My child recently had a vaccination and now has a fever. How do we know if its COVID-19 related or not?

It is really important to make sure children get their childhood vaccinations according to the normal schedule. If your child has developed a fever after a recent vaccination you should contact your GP to determine if they need to stay home or can go to school.

What do I do if my child has to isolate at home?

If you and your family need to isolate because of COVID-19 symptoms or exposure you can get support with accessing groceries and supplies by calling the Newham COVID-19 Helpline at 020 7473 9711 (9am-7pm, seven days a week) or emailing [email protected]

The Newham COVID-19 Helpline can also provide advice on how to isolate properly, how to get tested, getting financial support during your isolation period and more.

You should inform your school/college as soon as possible if you are self-isolating.

Am I, or my family, at higher risk of COVID-19 because of our Black, Asian, or Minority Ethnic (BAME) background?

There is no evidence that ethnicity itself increases your risk of getting COVID-19. However, people of Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic backgrounds were particularly affected by COVID-19 in the first wave of the pandemic for a variety of reasons that increased their risk of exposure such as having jobs that they could not do from home, pre-existing conditions and risk factors (e.g. diabetes) or living with extended family.

Newham Council is working with the NHS to reduce racism, inequality and risk factors for severe COVID-19 in all our communities.

What COVID-19 measures will change at my child’s school?

School will feel different for your child as COVID-19 measures are relaxed.

  • Bubbles and staggered start and finish times are no longer required
  • Children can again have breaktimes and lunch together and take part in practical lessons and sports with other classes and year groups
  • Face coverings are no longer required for staff or visitors
  • Schools are advised to continue with regular handwashing, cleaning regimes, and to keep spaces well ventilated
  • If your child is identified as a close contact, they will not need to self-isolate
  • Schools will have plans in place on what to do if anyone at school tests positive for COVID-19, or if additional measures are reintroduced for a limited period.

What happens if my child has been in contact with someone with COVID-19 symptoms?

 If your child has been identified as a close contact, you will be advised that your child takes a PCR test. They will not have to self-isolate, unless they have a positive PCR test result.

Will my child be vaccinated?

The vaccine has not been offered to children at primary school. Only young people aged 16 to 17 and children aged 12 to 15 with specific underlying health conditions or who live with others at increased risk of getting seriously ill from COVID-19 are now eligible for the vaccine. All school staff have now been offered the vaccine.

Does my child need to continue doing COVID-19 tests?

Yes. Secondary school and college students should test when they return at the start of term. They are advised to take two on-site rapid COVID-19 tests (three to five days apart), followed by twice weekly testing at home.

The tests are easy to do and results come back within 30 minutes. You should report the results straight away, whether positive, negative or void, either online at gov.uk/report-covid19-result or by calling 119, free from your mobile or landline. If the test is positive then the person should also take a confirmatory PCR test and follow the latest government guidance.

Around one in three people with COVID-19 have no symptoms and can spread it without knowing. Taking regular rapid tests will help give you peace of mind that your child is not spreading the virus without knowing.

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact your child’s school or college to talk them through.

For further information and guidance:

To find out more about what to expect when pupils return to school in September, visit: www.gov.uk/backtoschool

How to order a rapid COVID-19 test for asymptomatic testing: https://maps.test-and-trace.nhs.uk

How to report your rapid COVID-19 test results: https://www.gov.uk/report-covid19-result or call 119 (free from mobile or landline)

How to order a PCR test if you or your child has COVID-19 symptoms: https://www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test