Students in Wolverhampton will be required to take 2 rapid Covid-19 tests when they return to secondary schools in the city after the Christmas break.

Pupils should take 1 test on site when they return to school, followed by another at home 3 to 4 days later. They will then be asked to take a rapid test twice a week, as was the case in the autumn term.

Staff will continue to test twice weekly, including on their first day back.

The Government has said that testing all pupils in school “will help reduce transmission after a period of social mixing over the school holidays”.

Meanwhile, face coverings should continue to be worn in communal areas by students, staff and visitors to secondary schools, by staff and visitors to primary schools and on school and public transport.

Councillor Mike Hardacre, the City of Wolverhampton Council's Cabinet Member for Education and Skills, said: "We are continuing to work closely with local providers to help them implement the guidance from the Department of Education and ensure that every precaution is taken to make our schools as safe and Covid secure as they can be.

"The situation with Covid-19, and particularly the new Omicron variant, is changing rapidly and therefore schools are rightly making preparations to reintroduce other measures such as bubbles and staggered start times if they are deemed necessary.

"There is also a possibility that schools might have to provide some teaching remotely and, if this were to be the case, I am reassured that they are in a strong position to offer learning online. 

"However, we are very clear that – so long as it is safe to do so – it is in the best interests of children and young people to be in school, not only for their educational wellbeing but also for their psychological wellbeing, and we hope that all schools will be able to welcome their pupils back next month as planned.”

For the latest Covid-19 information and guidance, please visit GOV.UK.