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Holmleigh Park High School

COVID-19 Testing from September

Important Information regarding COVID-19 testing in September

Dear all,

I am writing with details regarding COVID-19 tests for students on their return in September.

As you may be aware, secondary schools have been asked to offer students two tests at the start of September. This is to try and screen out any students who may have COVID-19 but no symptoms.

Once this has taken place, students will continue to beoffered Lateral Flow Tests, and encouraged to test twice a week at home. This will be in place until the end of September, at which point it will be reviewed. 

I have included further details on testing below. If you already have a child at Holmleigh Park, you will be familiar with much of the information to follow, whereas if you are new to the school, there will be quite a lot of information to take in.

Please therefore click on the relevant option:


If your child is already at Holmleigh Park

Testing at School

If you have already given your consent for your child to be tested, you do not need to take any further action. Please make sure you have checked below what time your child should come for their first test on Thursday 2nd / Friday 3rd September; they do not need to wear uniform for this.

Please note, if you also have a new child joining us in September, you will need to fill out a consent form for that child only. 

If you have changed whether you consent to your child being tested or not, please click here and fill in the consent form to update your preferences. We will always use your most recent response. If your child is unable to attend the in-school testing, I'd appreciate it if you could consider having them take a test at home instead before returning. 

Testing at Home

Please note that the government have also asked that students continue to test themselves at home, twice a week and report the results to Test and Trace. We will be giving out new kits in September. I would be very grateful if you could continue to report these results to Holmeigh Park as well by clicking here.

If your child is new to Holmleigh Park

Testing At School

If your child is joining us in Year 7, it's likely they will not have taken a test in school before. I appreciate that this is far from ideal for your child's first experience of Holmleigh Park, and I'm very sorry that this will be the case. However, I hope you'll agree with me that it's better to get the test out of the way before their first full day so they don't have too much to worry about on their first full day!

Students should come to the lower playground on Friday 3rd September

  • If their surname begins with A-L, they should arrive between 08:30 and 09:30.

  • If their surname begins with M-Z, they should arrive between 09:30 and 10:30.

You will be welcome to wait in the queue with them before they go into the testing centre - once in there, it should only take a few minutes before they re-emerge. There will be lots of staff on hand to reassure and support students throughout the process.

The main thing we need from you in advance is your consent. We will only test students if you have given your permission in advance. You can do this by filling in this form.

If you do not wish to give consent, I would be grateful if you could still complete the form and indicate this at the end - this means we won't then contact you to check your preference as we will already know that you do not consent.

Students will then take a second test on Monday 6th September - this will be done during their lessons; our experience is that this second test is much easier as they've already done one!

Testing at Home

The government ask that secondary age students take two lateral flow tests per week when they are in school. For us, this will be from Wednesday 8th September, after our in-school testing finishes.

You may already be familiar with Lateral Flow Tests, and, of course, we will show your child how to do this if they take an in-school test. 

We will be giving these out to students from Monday 6th September onwards, and the packs contain full instructions. We ask that students complete two tests a week: one on Sunday evening or Monday morning, and another on Tuesday evening or Wednesday morning. 

Although I appreciate it's another hassle, it's helpful if you can report the results both to NHS Test and Trace (click here) and directly to the school (click here). Obviously, this is particularly important if the result is positive!

Further Information on COVID processes for new parents

If you are new to the school, you can find more information on our COVID precautions in the section below. 

General Information on COVID-19 Measures in School from September 

Many of you will already be familiar with our COVID protocols, but please can I remind you of the following:

  • Holmleigh Park will no longer carry out contact tracing if a student tests positive for COVID-19. Instead, NHS Test and Trace will work with the affected family to identify a small number of close contacts.

  • We will no longer notify parents of each positive case in real time - but I will continue to update you on overall case numbers through my weekly letters. 

  • Those close contacts will be advised to take a PCR. If this is negative, they will be able to return to school instead of self-isolating.

  • We will no longer operate a bubble system for lessons (although we will be keeping the social time bubbles as the feedback from both parents and students has been very positive!. 

  • If we detect a surge in the number of cases in the school, we will consult with Public Health England, and may temporarily reintroduce some restrictions like bubbles, facemasks etc.

Full details of our COVID-19 controls can be found in our COVID-19 Risk Assessment in the policies section of our website. 


I have included further details on rapid flow testing below - including details of when students should come in for their first test. Please do take a few minutes to familiarise yourself with this information.

I look forward to welcoming your children back in September,

Best wishes,

Mr Farmbrough




Rapid (Lateral Flow) Testing: Frequently Asked Questions (September 2021)

What is a rapid COVID-19 test?

  • A rapid COVID-19 test (also known as a lateral flow test) involves a simple swab. Unlike the Innova test kits used earlier this year, we will now be using a slightly different test kit which only requires nasal swabbing (i.e. no throat swabs)

  • Students will be asked to administer this themselves, with a member of staff watching and giving instructions.

  • Test results will be sent to parents by the end of the day.

What tests are happening and when?

  • All students are invited to take two lateral flow tests on site. There will be two phases of testing:

  • First, students will be able to take a test on either Thursday 2nd or Friday 3rd September. Students will come in at specified times (see below) and then go straight home.




Surnames beginning with A-L: Friday 3rd September, 08:30-09:30

Surnames beginning with M-Z: Friday 3rd September, 09:30-10:30


Surnames beginning with A-L: Friday 3rd September, 11:15-12:00

Surnames beginning with M-Z: Friday 3rd September, 12:00-12:45


Surnames beginning with A-L: Friday 3rd September, 13:30-14:20

Surnames beginning with M-Z: Friday 3rd September, 14:20-15:10


Surnames beginning with A-L: Thursday 2nd September, 14:15-14:45

Surnames beginning with M-Z: Thursday 2nd September, 14:45-15:15


Surnames beginning with A-L: Thursday 2nd September, 13:15-13:45

Surnames beginning with M-Z: Thursday 2nd September, 13:45-14:15


All students: Thursday 2nd September, 12:15-12:45


All students: Thursday 2nd September, 12:00-12:15

  • Students will then take their second test on either Monday 5th or Tuesday 6th September. Students should come to school as normal; tests will take place during lessons.

Is testing compulsory?

Participation is voluntary. Your child will only be tested if you have provided consent via our online form.

If you do not consent, we hope you will still continue to have your child take COVID-19 tests at home.

How will we be told the test result?

Test results take around 30 minutes to process, but then have to be uploaded onto the Track and Trace portal. This means you will most likely get your results at the end of the day - but if your child tests positive we will endeavour to contact you immediately.

How many times do students have to be tested?

Students are invited to take two tests at school. After this, students will still be encouraged to take tests twice a week at home.

Where do students go for this test?

Students should enter via the lower playground (by the car park). They should head straight to the Sports Hall. The sports hall will be the testing centre and staff and signs will be in place to direct you to the correct entrance and route through.

My child is new to the school; what should they do?

We appreciate that for some children, this will be their first experience of Holmleigh Park. This is not the start we'd hoped for, and we did consider making the test part of their induction day. However, we were advised that it would be better to complete the tests on a separate day before the students started mixing.

We know that some students might be anxious about this, but our staff will be on hand to guide students through the process. It should only take a few minutes from arrival to departure. Parents will be able to queue with their child (although you won't be able to go through the testing centre with them).

New students will be registered ahead of their first test, but please make sure you have filled in the consent form in advance.

What happens if my child tests positive for Covid-19?

Your child and their household should self-isolate and follow the government guidance linked here: . They should also complete a PCR test to confirm the result; if this is negative, they will not need to self-isolate.

What do parents need to do now?

For now, you only need to give your consent (if you haven't done this already). You can do this by clicking here. Please note, you need to fill in the form one time for each child at the school. Children aged 16 or over should fill in the form themselves.