Milton Keynes families with children in school and college to receive two free Covid tests a week

When schools reopen across the country next week tests will be made available to those heading back to in-person education.

Monday, 1st March 2021, 12:07 pm
Updated Monday, 1st March 2021, 12:08 pm

The Government announced that rapid Coronavirus tests will be provided twice a week to pupils' households.

Those in childcare and support bubbles will also receive tests from March 8, when schools are slated to reopen.

The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) outlined plans to use local testing sites to obtain lateral flow tests.

Milton Keynes families with children returning to school or college will receive two rapid Coronavirus tests per week

Milton Keynes' pupils first three tests will be administered at school before they will be required to take these tests home.

These tests are for all pupils regardless of whether or not they have shown any symptoms relating to the virus.

The twice-weekly rapid tests will also be made available for adults who work with schools such as bus drivers.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock believes this regular testing will ensure parents schools are safe, he said: "Regular testing of households and childcare support bubbles of primary and secondary school children is another tool we are making available to help keep schools safe.

“We know that one in three people with Covid-19 don’t have any symptoms, so targeted, regular testing will mean more positive cases are kept out of schools and colleges.”

Tests will be made available to families starting today (March 1), ahead of schools reopening next week.

However, Labour’s shadow education secretary Kate Green has criticised the plans amid concerns that financial worries will discourage families from taking the tests, and called for the government to increase self-isolation support.

She said: “School testing will not work if families struggling financially are too scared about losing out on income to take the tests.

“If the government is serious about using testing to help get all children back to school, they must improve self-isolation support by extending eligibility for the £500 Test and Trace Support Payment to anyone without access to workplace sick pay.”