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Testing at home (lateral flow tests)

Please refer to letters sent home for testing arrangements relating to the return to school in September 2021.

(Note the information below related to home-testing during the 2020-21 academic year - it will be updated shortly.)

Up to 1 in 3 people who have COVID-19 have no symptoms and could be spreading it without knowing. Getting into a regular habit of testing twice a week will help stop the virus spreading, keeping your family, friends and the school community safer.

  • Please make sure your child tests themselves twice a week 3-5 days apart, we recommend that your child is tested on Sunday evenings and Wednesday evenings.
  • The government have asked us to inform you not to use the leaflet inside the box (throw it away, it is incorrect). Please use the instruction leaflet that we provide with the kit.
  • You can also watch this government recommended Youtube Video to show you how to administer the tests at home.
  • Your child should also continue testing twice a week, at home, throughout the Easter school holidays. We will be sending home extra kits for the Easter holiday before term ends.
  • This does not replace testing for those with symptoms. If you have symptoms you must self-isolate immediately, book a PCR test and follow national guidelines.

You must report the results

It is important that results of the tests are reported online straight away, even if your child’s result is negative or void. It’s easy to do at www.gov.uk/report-covid19-result.

Results can also be reported via telephone by calling 119 (free from mobiles and landlines). Lines are open every day, 7am to 11pm.

It is important to keep a note of your child’s results and to also share your result with the school via this link: Share results with school

If your home test result is positive

If your home test result is positive, please inform the school by telephone or email immediately. Do not send your child to school. You will then have to undertake a confirmatory PCR test and follow the government self-isolation guidance.

Testing for parents, households and bubbles twice a week

I would like to remind you that regular rapid testing is now also available for parents, their households and support or childcare bubbles. The government is encouraging all families to participate in twice weekly testing to help stop the spread.

Parents and other adults in the household can access tests by:

  • Ordering tests online www.gov.uk/order-school-household-tests
  • Getting an assisted test at work, if it is available
  • Attending a test site to get tested (where you will be able to see how to take the test) or pick up tests to do at home.

To find out more on school household testing visit Households and bubbles of pupils, students and staff of schools and colleges: get rapid lateral flow tests - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)


Rapid coronavirus (COVID-19) testing in schools

On the return of schools on 8th March, each consenting student will take a lateral flow test before going to classes, and then have two more tests in school, at three-day intervals, before home-testing kits are distributed to families. Staff are tested regularly. 

  • Testing will be done using Lateral Flow Tests, which give results in around 30 minutes (without requiring a laboratory to process the test).
  • Students will be given full guidance and support during the tests. 
  • If at any point, the student or staff member test positive with a rapid test, they would then take a further PCR test (the "standard" Covid-19 test) and follow self-isolation guidelines.
  • This approach supports rapid testing of asymptomatic staff and students, and is being rolled out across all schools.


Consent is required for the testing, for which forms have been distributed to parents. If you have any queries about this please contact the office


The government has provided schools with guidance on setting up testing stations and conducting the tests, and we have followed this rigorously. Please refer to the government website if you would like to read the full guidance being provided to schools. The following pages are a good starting point:

Actions for schools during the coronavirus outbreak

Asymptomatic testing: schools and colleges


How the testing process works

How to do a covid-test information poster

Different format / language?

If you require information on the COVID-19 schools testing programme, or any other aspect of the coronavirus pandemic, in an alternative format, general materials are available from Public Health England on their website. Further publications on school testing are added as the programme develops.

Please contact us here at the school if you require any clarification or have specific questions about testing at The Swanage School.