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Coronavirus: West Norfolk schools join national testing programme to track spread of infection

Three West Norfolk secondary schools are taking part in a new testing programme intended to track the spread of coronavirus, officials have announced this morning.

Students and staff at the Springwood High School in Lynn, Smithdon High School in Hunstanton and Marshland High School are being invited to participate in the programme.

Testing sessions have already taken place at Marshland and Smithdon, while the first at Springwood is scheduled for next week.

Coronavirus news
Coronavirus news

The schools, which are all part of the West Norfolk Academies Trust (WNAT), are among 150 in the country taking part in the infection survey, which is being led by Public Health England, the Office for National Statistics and the London Schools of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.

The announcement of their participation comes after four new coronavirus cases at WNAT schools were confirmed last night – three at Springwood and one at St Clements High School, Terrington St Clement.

Executive headteacher Andy Johnson said today: β€œIt is a great opportunity to take part in an important study to monitor infection and transmission of Coronavirus in schools.

"We will be helping paint a national picture on the spread of the virus, as well as creating a local signpost for West Norfolk,”

The trust has stressed that participation is voluntary and people who do take part will be eligible for virus and antibody tests every half term until the end of the academic year next July.

Different year groups are also being asked to take part at the three schools, with year 7 and 8 students invited to take part at Marshland.

Year 9 and 10 students are being asked to get involved at Smithdon, while the Springwood survey will cover sixth formers.

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