Covid rules reintroduced at Ipswich school after cases surge
- Credit: Gregg Brown
An Ipswich high school has reintroduced several Covid measures after recording a "higher than average" number of cases.
According to a letter sent out on September 27, Chantry Academy was deep cleaned over the weekend and is once again requiring students and staff to wear face masks while on site.
Common areas of use, such as the school's dining hall, are now zoned to ensure year groups are separated — while the number of mass gatherings is being reduced.
Leaders of the Mallard Way school met with public health officials late last week and have approved the reintroduction of a number of rules.
In a letter to parents, executive headteacher Craig D'Cunha said: "While we appreciate that this is a difficult time and many of you are worried about the spread of the infection, we are taking action to reduce the impact on your child’s education.
"I would encourage every child to attend school as we cannot authorise self-isolation without confirmation of a positive PCR test.
"As a school we are exceeding the advice and guidance by Public Health England and the Department for Education.
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"We appreciate your support during this challenging time and feel reassured that these measures will enable your child to access their education and continue to be successful in their learning."
The letter added that the school would be "fogged" each evening.
Chantry Academy is the second school in the Ipswich area to bring back more Covid rules in the last week after a surge in cases.
Kesgrave High School is enforcing "extra-cautionary" measures, such as mask wearing, after around 30 students were forced to self-isolate.
According to Suffolk County Council, there were 1,209 students and 117 members of staff in isolation across the county's schools Between September 12 and 23.
As per new government guidance, Covid 'bubbles' have been dropped and pupils no longer have to isolate if they have been in close contact with someone with Covid — but they are still advised to get a PCR test.
The government has urged people who test positive on a lateral flow test to self-isolate and book a PCR test.