'Children should be in school' - warning to Penwortham parents worried about 'inconclusive' Covid-19 test

Parents who raised concerns about a coronavirus test are being urged to keep sending their children to school, unless told otherwise by health officials.

Friday, 11th September 2020, 1:56 pm

The message from Lancashire County Council comes after some parents chose to remove pupils from Howick C of E Primary School, near Penwortham, following one child's 'inconclusive' Covid-19 test result.

The child's parents are believed to have received positive results, and the child is currently isolating at home with them.

Because the child did not have a positive result, the school - on advice from Public Health England - has not instructed anyone in the child's year to isolate and classes are running as normal. But it is understood some other families have since removed their children in order to isolate because they feel worried.

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Howick C of E Primary School

One parent told the Post: "I agree the school is following the advice provided although I disagree with the advice, as do many other parents.

"The advice is simply not good enough. An inconclusive result should be treated as a positive until another test is conducted. It has been treated as a negative here which is ludicrous."

Pamela Maloney, headteacher at Howick Church of England Primary School, said: "Following guidance from Public Health England and the Department for Education we are actively working with parents with a view to getting children back learning as soon as possible.

"The welfare of our children remains extremely important to us."

Parents who have elected to remove their children from the school claim they were not sent any homework to complete, but now say this has changed.

Lancashire County Council said work is not typically sent to children with unauthorised absences as it would condone the leave and create a dual-system of teaching.

A spokesman for Lancashire County Council said: "The Government is very clear that all children, in all year groups, should have returned to school in September. It is our firm intention that this is the situation, as long as it is safe to do so.

"I know that schools and colleges were ready and waiting to get back to teaching, with the right protective measures in place. "

The NHS website states an inconclusive test means it's not possible to say if a person had coronavirus when the test was done, and it advises taking a further test.