Coronavirus Safety Notice

02 Feb 2020

Dear Parents,

The health of our pupils and staff is of paramount importance.  Our aim is to give our staff, parents and pupils as much information as possible about the disease so that they are better equipped to deal with it.   Please   find   below   important   information   on   the coronavirus, as well as precautionary measures.


·      The symptoms of this virus range from infected people with little to no symptoms to severe illness and death.


·       According to research, symptoms can include fever, cough and shortness of breath. Pneumonia   is   common,   but   not   always   present. Gastrointestinal symptoms, including diarrhea, have also been reported.


·       The  symptoms  can  appear  in  as  few  as  two  days  or  as  long  as  fourteen  days  after exposure. This  is  based  on  what  has  been  seen  previously  as  the  incubation  period of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS).


      How to protect yourself from infection


·       The  most  likely  way  of  getting  an  infection  is  by  inhalation,  by  touch  and  by  eating something that is infected.


·       It  may  sound  simple  but  if  done  thoroughly,  washing  your  hands  will  offer  the  best protection from any type of infection, including flu, which remains a risk at this time of year.


·       According  to  research,  you  need  to  lather  your  hands,  which  should  have  been  wet with clean warm or cold water, with soap. All areas should be   thoroughly scrubbed, including the backs of your hands, between your fingers and under your nails. This should be done for at least 20 seconds.


·       Once you wash your hands, make sure they are dry.  If you can’t wash your hands, make sure you have a hand sanitizer.


Other precautionary measures include the following

·       If your child is suspected or has a confirmed diagnosis of an infectious illness (i.e. influenza, measles, mumps, chicken pox, meningitis, scarlet fever, etc.) please contact the School Nurse directly as soon as possible and provide a medical report. The School Nurse is then able to alert the school community, if appropriate, and instigate measures as mandated by the Department of Health.


·       Pupils are to remain at home for 48 hours from last episode of diarrhea or vomiting. A doctor’s note stating it is safe for your child to return to school must be provided if your child is to return any earlier.


·       When coughing and sneezing, cover mouth and nose with flexed elbow or tissue, throw tissue away immediately and wash hands.


·       Avoid close contact with anyone who has a fever or a cough.


·       If you have a fever, cough and difficulty breathing, seek medical care early and share previous travel history with your health care provider.

·       When visiting live markets in areas currently experiencing cases of novel coronavirus, avoid direct unprotected contact with live animals and surfaces in contact with animals.

·       The consumption of raw or undercooked animal products should be avoided. Raw meat, milk or animal organs should be handled with care, to avoid cross-contamination with uncooked foods, as per good food safety practice.


                 What we are doing to support our school network


·       Teachers are further educating our pupils with personal hygiene and hand washing techniques and reinforcing the importance of washing their hands.


·       We have made available masks to the clinic staff to administer to pupils as a temporary measure if required during diagnosis whilst awaiting collection by a parent.


·       Information packs like this one to offer a reminder of when to keep pupils home through various types of illness, along with the supporting hygiene information to help reinforce this good practice at home.


·       We appreciate this can be a worrying time for parents and pupils, and it is important to approach these situations with a measured, appropriate response, assessing risk on an ongoing basis. We want to assure you that our school is doing everything they can to ensure the robust hygiene management systems we have in place are being maintained to the highest possible standards to ensure our learning communities are safe at all times.