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Orchard School Bristol

Coronavirus frequently asked questions

What do I do if someone in the home is self-Isolating, should I send my child/ren to school?
The Government advice is if anyone living at your home has symptoms (see below) then all the household should self-isolate for 14 days.

What do I do if my child develops symptoms including a temperature and/or persistent cough?
You should follow the Government advice to self-isolate

What would happen if a child/family member test positive?
The Government advice is if anyone living at your home has symptoms (see below) then all the household should self-isolate for 14 days.

My child is ill, should I keep them home?
You should only keep you child at home if they have developed symptoms (see links below).

Is the school going to close?
The school will remain open unless advised to close by the Government or it becomes unsafe due to staffing absence.  If staffing numbers are reduced due to self-isolation or staff being unwell we are planning how we can maintain partial opening for exam year group.  You will be kept up to date through the usual school communication routes.

What precautions are the school taking?

  • All pupils are being regularly reminded how to wash hands and prompted to do so.  Posters are visible around the school to remind staff and pupils to wash hands.
  • All visitors to the school are required to use hand sanitizer before coming into the school.
  • Non-essential meetings are going to be cancelled or move on line/telephone to reduce contact.
  • If the school closes will pupils be given work to do?
  • We are currently planning how we will continue to provide pupils with learning in the event of the school closing.  There will be a variety of ways in which pupils will access work which will include on-line tools and classrooms, work books, physical resources. When/if schools close you will be given detailed information on how your child/ren can access continued learning.

Will self-isolation be authorised with and without a doctor's advice - what should I do?
It is unlikely that you will receive doctors’ advice to self-isolate, this is a decision individuals should take based on the symptoms set out below.  You should report your child’s absence in the normal way indicating that it is self-isolation and what symptoms you child is experiencing.

How will I know if the school shuts?
You will be informed of any school closure through our normal notification mechanisms and all pupils will be advised through tutor groups/assemblies and class teachers.

What happens if I choose not to bring my child in even though they don't have symptoms and there is no-one at home with symptoms?
Until the school officially closes your child should be in school unless they have symptoms (see links below) or unwell.  If you choose to keep your child at home for other reasons, we are unable to authorise this absence.

How much notice will parents get of the school closing?
The school will contact parents as soon as the school is advised by the Government/Public Health England or partial closer is needed due to safety reasons.  We do not know at this time how much notice we will receive from the Government.

What do I do if one child has got symptoms but the other hasn't, should I keep them both off and isolate?
The Government advice is if anyone living at your home has symptoms (see below) then all the household should self-isolate for 14 days.

If I am self-isolating my child because they are showing symptoms, can they come back to school before the 14 days isolation is up, if they are better? Or do they need to stay off for the whole 14 days?

No – you should follow the most up to date advice which is currently to self-isolate for 14 days regardless of wellness.

Will my child's absence affect their attendance record?
We will have to record absence due to self-isolation as this is a legal requirement, however we are very aware that we will have to consider dispensation for absence related to coronavirus.  

Will the school call parents to come and collect children if they develop symptoms in school?

Do you have hand sanitizer in school?
Washing hands is a more effective method of control and therefore wherever possible, pupils and staff will be using soap and water regularly.  We do have hand sanitizer available where handwashing facilities are not readily available.

Can I keep my child at home for extra precautions or where family members have high risk conditions even if they are not displaying any symptoms yet?
We are unable to authorise absence under these conditions

This advice is taken from the Government’s website found HERE



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

  • New continuous cough and/or
  • High temperature

 For most people, Coronavirus (COVID-19) will be a mild infection


Main messages

  • If you have symptoms of Coronavirus infection (COVID-19), however mild, do not leave your home for 14 days from when your symptoms started. (See ending isolation section below for more information)
  • This action will help protect others in your community while you are infectious
  • Plan ahead and ask others for help to ensure that you can successfully stay at home
  • Ask your employer, friends and family to help you get the things you need to stay at home
  • Stay at least two metres (about three steps) away from other people in your home if possible
  • Sleep alone, if possible
  • Wash your hands regularly for 20 seconds, each time using soap and water, or use hand sanitiser
  • Stay away from vulnerable individuals, such as the elderly and those with underlying health conditions, as much as possible
  • You do not need to call NHS 111 to go into self-isolation. If your symptoms worsen during home isolation or are no better after seven days, contact NHS 111 online. If you have no internet access, call NHS 111. For a medical emergency dial 999


Ending Self-Isolation

You should remain at home until 14 days after the onset of your symptoms. After 14 days, if you feel better and no longer have a high temperature, you can return to your normal routine. If you have not had any signs of improvement and have not already sought medical advice, contact NHS 111 online. If you have no internet access, call NHS 111.

Coughing may persist for several weeks in some people, despite the Coronavirus infection having cleared. A persistent cough alone does not mean you must continue to self-isolate for more than 14 days.