With emerging evidence of the transmission of non-UK variants of Covid-19 in Wolverhampton, the city's schools are being asked to implement additional, temporary, measures to help stop the spread of the virus.

It is now recommended that any pupil or staff member who is either off sick or becomes unwell and therefore has to go home limits their contact with others and gets a Covid-19 PCR test – whether or not they have one of the typical symptoms of coronavirus, such as a fever, a new, continuous cough, or a change to their taste or smell. 

If the test is negative, the individual can return to school once they feel well again. 

If, however, the result is positive, the individual and their household must self isolate for 10 days from the onset of symptoms, or until the individual in question is fever free for at least 48 hours, whichever is later. Other household contacts can stop self isolating after 10 days, as long as they are well themselves.

People can book a PCR test by calling 119 or visiting GOV.UK. People without symptoms of Covid-19 should answer ‘no’ when asked about symptoms, and then select the option ‘I’ve been told to get a test by my local council, health protection team or healthcare professional’ in order to book their test.

If anyone chooses not to take a PCR test they should stay off school, limit their contact with others and only to return to school once they have been well for 48 hours.

Councillor Dr Michael Hardacre, the City of Wolverhampton Council's Cabinet Member for Education and Skills, said: "We have seen the emergence of new variants of Covid-19 in Wolverhampton in recent weeks, including the more transmissible variant first identified in India.

"These of course pose a risk to the excellent progress we have made over the last few months in tackling the spread of Covid-19 in Wolverhampton, and we are therefore asking our schools to implement these additional measures as a precaution. 

“We will review this advice on a regular basis and keep schools informed if the situation changes.”

He added: “At the same time, we are recommending that all secondary schools and the City of Wolverhampton College continue to promote the wearing of face coverings until at least half-term.

“I would urge families and carers to continue doing everything else they can to stop the spread of this virus, by practicing social distancing and wearing face coverings on the school run, getting a twice-weekly rapid Covid-19 test and getting their life-saving vaccine as soon as they are able to.”

For details of rapid testing, please visit Lateral Flow Home Test Kits.

For more information about the vaccine, including the answers to frequently asked questions, please visit Covid-19 Vaccine or NHS.Appointments can be made through the national booking website

Further details of the restrictions currently in place, and the answers to frequently asked questions, are available at Covid Alert.