As the annual cold and flu season begins, parents are being reminded not to confuse the common cold with coronavirus.
Bedford Borough Council has also said children with symptoms such as a runny nose or sore throat, can attend school so long as they are well enough to do so.
Only those with one or more of the coronavirus symptoms need to be kept off school and take a test.
Coronavirus symptoms are:
- A high temperature – this means you feel hot to the touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)
- A new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or three or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough it may be worse than usual)
- A loss or change to sense of smell or taste – this means you’ve noticed you cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal.
A Bedford Borough Council spokesperson said, “Bedford Borough Council has developed a process for schools to follow if a pupil or staff member exhibits COVID-19 symptoms or tests positive.
“The process is consistent with government guidance to schools and explains the steps the schools must take, including the immediate actions they should take; when to notify the Council and Public Health England; and the process for completing a risk assessment to determine which pupils and staff members will need to isolate.”
“We are aware that seasonal colds and respiratory illnesses are already circulating this year, and it is important that parents and carers are able to recognise the difference between these and COVID-19.
“Children with common cold symptoms, such as a runny nose or sore throat, can attend school so long as they are well enough to do so.”
If your child has Covid-19 symptoms
“Children with COVID-19 symptoms should stay at home and get a test. Children who become symptomatic at school will be isolated from their class and parents will be asked to collect them immediately.
“Symptomatic children will need to remain at home for 10 days from the onset of symptoms or until a negative test result is received.
“Siblings and other household members will need to self-isolate for 14 days from the onset of symptoms, but should only arrange a test for themselves if they become symptomatic or if they are contacted by test and trace and asked to do so.
“Tests are available from https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/testing-and-tracing/get-a-test-to-check-if-you-have-coronavirus/ or by calling 119. We understand that national issues with the availability of tests are having an impact locally, but we are encouraging parents and carers to keep trying as tests are released in batches throughout the day.”