People urged to support schools as Covid cases rise

Covid cases are continuing to rise in Dudley borough, with the largest number of cases being seen in children and young people.

There has been a large number of outbreaks in educational settings across the borough, with 530.7 cases per 100,000 10 to 19 year olds recorded last week.

Public health continues to support early years settings, schools and colleges to look at ways of reducing transmission and parents are urged to remember the importance of testing and isolating.

Where there is a confirmed outbreak of Covid-19 in an educational setting, public health will work with the setting to introduce measures to keep everyone safe and reduce transmission. These would only be introduced for a short time and will be kept under constant review.

Measures may include the wearing of face coverings in communal areas and asking pupils to take a PCR test if they have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive, staying at home until they get their results.

Pupils of all ages can continue to play their part by practising good hand hygiene and giving space to one another, especially indoors. Young people including those aged 12 to 15 are also encouraged to take up the offer of vaccination. Councillor Nicolas Barlow, cabinet member for public health and wellbeing, said:

"Much like many areas of the country, we are seeing an increased number of Covid cases in our children and young people and some of our educational settings are experiencing outbreaks.

"Public health is working with schools to look at possible ways to reduce transmission and keep everyone safe. Today we have written to parents and carers to explain how they can support their child’s school if measures are temporarily reintroduced.

"I would remind everyone in the community that they can also play their part by regularly taking Lateral Flow Tests. Anyone experiencing covid symptoms must isolate at home and book a PCR test.”

People should take a PCR test if they have any of the main Covid symptoms – high temperature, a new continuous cough, a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste. As a precaution, those who are feeling generally unwell are also encouraged to take a PCR test as people who have tested positive for Covid-19 often display other symptoms.

Information on support available for people who need to isolate can be found at dudley.gov.uk/self-isolation.

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