Newsflash - Coronavirus Testing

Newsflash - Coronavirus Testing

Posted  22nd December 2020

Coronavirus Testing

As you may already know, in-school COVID-19 testing for all secondary-school age children is set to begin on 4 January 2021. The DfE released guidelines on 18 December for how to administer the testing. As this has come very late at the end of a very stressful term, we hope we can help by putting together the below list of recommendations from the DfE. We have also provided template forms to collect the data required before testing begins. These templates are based on the forms released by the DfE but have been revised in places to make them simpler for schools to administer. You are welcome to begin sending out the forms now.

As a result of testing, you will be collecting personal data through these forms. Please do contact us if you have any questions on how to keep this data secure; we are always happy to offer advice and guidance on this.

Information Letter To Staff and Parents and Registration Form

  • This letter explains what will happen and why the testing is being carried out.
  • Areas you need to edit are highlighted in yellow.
  • This should be sent to parents of under 16s, pupils over 16 and staff so they can register for a test.
  • The returned registration form contains personal data and must be kept secure.
“How To Carry Out Your Test” Information Leaflet
    • A simple to follow diagram of what to expect in the testing.
    • This may be sent out with the information letter and consent form.
    • It may also be made available at your test site.
    Consent Form for Parents (for Pupils Under 16)
    Consent Form for Staff and Pupils Over 16
    • Two template forms are attached. One for parents to complete for under 16s and one for self-completion by staff and children over 16.
    • Areas you need to edit are highlighted in yellow.
    • A consent form is needed for each person you test.
    • You only need to ask for consent once, before the first test. The consent form gives consent for multiple tests. It also advises that consent may be withdrawn.
    • If you do not receive consent you cannot carry out testing.
    • You will need to keep a signed copy for each test you carry out.
    • The returned form contains personal data and must be kept secure.

    You may want to send these out in grouped communications (for example by a parent text app or group email with all individuals blind copied).

    We currently don’t know the retention periods for these forms but would suspect this will be issued in further guidance over the Christmas break. For now we would suggest keeping returned consent forms and Covid testing documents in a separate folder to ensure retention is easier to manage when we do receive further guidance. All the templates are linked above but are also at in the documents section (under a new heading titled “Coronavirus Testing”).

    Despite this change, we hope you all manage to have a well earned Christmas and New Year break