Happy New Year – returning to college in January 2022

The Black Country and Marches IoT reopens for face-to-face teaching on January 4th. Before returning to the classroom students and staff, should take one lateral flow (LFD) self-test at home either the evening or morning before they return, then continue to test twice weekly at home.

Even if you have tested positive for COVID-19 within the last 90 days, you are encouraged to take part in LFD testing once you have completed your isolation period for infection.

You must then continue to test twice weekly at home and to report all results to NHS Test and Trace and to college.

Updated guidance on the use of face coverings in education settings

From Sunday 2nd January, it is recommended that face coverings are worn in classrooms The advice is short term and will be in place until Wednesday 26th January, at which point it will be reviewed.

Please bring a mask with you, a small number will be available at on-site receptions as before.

Information on the changes to the self-isolation period for individuals who test positive for COVID-19

Since Wednesday 22nd December, the 10 day self-isolation period for people who record a positive PCR test result for COVID-19 has been reduced to 7 days in most circumstances, unless you cannot test for any reason.

Individuals may now take LFD tests on day 6 and day 7 of their self-isolation period. Those who receive two negative test results are no longer required to complete 10 full days of self-isolation. The first test must be taken no earlier than day 6 of the self-isolation period and tests must be taken 24 hours apart. This also applies to children under 5, with LFD testing at parental or guardian discretion. If both these test results are negative, and you do not have a high temperature, you may end your self-isolation after the second negative test result and return to your education setting from day 8.

Anyone who is unable to take LFD tests will need to complete the full 10 day period of self-isolation. Further information is available in the stay at home: guidance for households with possible or confirmed COVID-19 infection.

Daily testing for close contacts of COVID-19

People who are fully vaccinated, or children and young people aged between 5 and 18 years and 6 months, identified as a close contact of someone with COVID-19, should take an LFD test every day for seven days and continue to attend College as normal, unless they have a positive test result or develop symptoms at any time.

Exams and assessments in January

Examinations and assessments in January will go ahead as originally planned.

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