A MEMBER of staff at a Christchurch school has tested positive for coronavirus - but the school will remain open.

Twynham School headteacher Jy Taylor has written to parents to inform them that one confirmed case of Covid-19 has been identified within the school's staff.

He said the staff member had not been at the school since it re-opened to students.

The school will remain open following a "thorough review of the situation and risks".

A "small group" of staff are self-isolating as a precaution based on NHS Test and Trace advice.

In his letter to parents, Mr Taylor said: "I am writing to advise you that, through our robust COVID procedures, we have identified one confirmed case of COVID-19 within our school staff. The affected colleague has not attended school since we re-opened to students, so we can categorically confirm that no students have been exposed to, or come into contact with, the confirmed case.

"We have rapidly engaged with Public Health England and Public Health Dorset and we are working closely with them, including following their procedures and advice to identify specific risks and manage this situation. Having conducted a thorough review of the situation and risks, we have decided that the school will remain open. We will continue to monitor and review this situation.

"Due to the extensive measures that we already implemented upon re-opening the school, the only additional action required at this stage is for a small group of our staff to self-isolate for 14 days as a precaution as advised by the Test and Trace Service. As reported nationally, there has been a sharp increase of cases, and we are confident that we can respond effectively to any further potential confirmed cases in the coming weeks and months. We are grateful for your support at this challenging time, as we work together as a community to remain vigilant and adhere to the recommended guidance."

As reported, Twynham School implemented a policy that all pupils must wear face masks in the classroom.

Initially it was not detailed how long this approach would be taken, but the Chief Executive Officer of Twynham Learning wrote to parents three days before the start of the new academic year to say the approach would be in place for a maximum of two weeks.

Gareth Morris said the time limit has been set “to enable the school to ‘normalise’ the large bubbles being formed following the re-integration of many students who have extensively travelled from both national and international high-risk locations and also have been exposed to low levels of social distancing during the summer.”