NHS Test and Trace announced earlier this week, that all adults in households with school and college age children without symptoms can now access regular rapid coronavirus (COVID-19) testing.

Test kits can either be collected or ordered online, as set out below. You should not give test kits to parents, carers or household members and should not order more test kits for this purpose. Secondary school and college students will continue to access testing through their school or college.

Please share the information below with your parent networks to help answer any questions they may have.

Undertaking regular, rapid coronavirus (COVID-19) testing helps reduce transmission of the virus. Parents and other adults in households with children at school or college, who do not have symptoms, can now access regular, rapid coronavirus (COVID-19) testing. This includes childcare and support bubbles.

Tests are fast, easy and completely free. There are different ways for a household, childcare or support bubble to collect their test to take at home, twice-weekly:

through your employer, if they offer testing to employeesby collecting a home test kit from a local test site – anyone aged 18 or over can collect 2 packs of 7 testsby ordering a home test kit online – please do not order online if you can access testing through other routes, this frees up home delivery for those who need it most

If you have any queries about the tests, and you live in England, please call 119 (free from mobiles and landlines). Lines are open every day from 7am to 11pm.

Children of primary school age (and below) without symptoms are not being asked to take a test.

Testing is voluntary, but strongly recommended to all who are eligible. Alongside the vaccine, washing hands, wearing face coverings, and maintaining social distancing, rapid testing plays a vital role in reducing transmission rates. Getting into the habit of regular testing as part of our everyday lives will help us all to play our part and do what we can to protect each other.

Travelling to school safely

As part of your ongoing communications with your pupils and their parents, you may wish to share the following messages on how pupils can travel to and from school safely:

if you live a short distance from your school or college, walk, cycle or scoot to and from school wherever it is possible and safe to do soavoid sharing a car with anyone outside of your household or support bubbleif you are using public transport to get to school or college, plan ahead and allow more time for your journeywhen you are travelling by public or dedicated school transport, don’t forget to: wear a face covering (unless you are exempt, including if you are aged 11 and under). It is important  you wear them for the entirety of your journey, including inside a bus or train stationsocial distance where possiblewash or sanitise your hands regularlybe considerate to fellow passengers and staff.