I have been a Head Teacher for 16 years and faced many challenges along the way. Rarely have I ever experienced anything like the escalation of the coronavirus that we have witnessed in the last few days. Unlike other events such as bird flu, swine flu, foot and mouth etc, this is an international crisis that is fulfilling its unwelcome potential and changing by the hour. Keeping up to date with guidance is proving to be difficult and the wisest course of action has to be reached. If in doubt, I tend to err on the side of caution but even then, what was cautious one day is insufficient a few days later. On Sunday, I spent 13 hours establishing procedures and communicating with parents, staff, governors and HT colleagues about the virus. It is good to have the support of others in difficult times.
At the time of writing, the latest guidance is for families to self-isolate for 14 days if one family member displays the key symptoms of a new continuous cough or a high temperature. We need the support of all members of the school community in order to implement this advice.