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Easy-to-follow guide for parent & carers on COVID-19 procedures for pupils

To help reassure parents and carers who are concerned about what will happen if a pupil or student becomes unwell with COVID-19 at a school or college, Sefton Council has produced a new, easy-to-follow-chart, which maps the process.


It explains that if a pupil is ill with the symptoms of COVID-19 – a new, continuous cough or a high temperature or a loss of, or change in, their normal sense of taste or smell – they must stay away from school or college.

Parents and cares should inform the school or college and book an appointment for a coronavirus test at  or by calling 119.

The child should isolate for at least 10 days from when symptoms start and other members of the household including any brother and sisters should self-isolate for 14 days from when the symptoms began.

If the child is not showing coronavirus symptoms, parents and carers should follow the normal sickness procedure for the school or college.

Positive test result

The chart explains that if the child with COVID_19 symptoms receives a positive test result, they must continue to self-isolate for at least 10 days and their school or college should be informed immediately. After the 10 days are complete, if their symptoms are only the cough or loss of sense of smell or taste, they can go back. If they still have a high temperature, they should continue self-isolating until their temperature returns to normal. Other members of their household should continue self-isolating for the 14 days.

Negative test result

If the child with COVID_19 symptoms receives a negative test result, they can return to school or college and stop self-isolating when they are well and free from symptoms. Other members of their household can stop self-isolating too.

Becoming unwell while at school or college

If a pupil becomes unwell with COVID-19 symptoms at school or college, they will be sent home and should follow the ‘stay at home’ guidance for households with possible or confirmed ‘coronavirus infection’ along with other with members of their household.

While the pupil is awaiting collection, actions to improve ventilation and minimise contact will be taken and once they have been collected, staff will follow hand hygiene processes and will clean any affected area.

The school or college setting will inform parents, carers and pupils if additional actions are required.

When a pupil or staff member has tested positive, parents and carers will be informed about any actions required.

Testing positive after attending school or college

If a pupil or member of staff tests positive after attending school or college, parents and carers will be told if any additional actions are required.

If an outbreak is confirmed in a school, Public Health England advice will be followed. This may include larger numbers of pupils and staff members having to self-isolate.

Anyone who is contacted by Public Health England as a contact of a case, must self-isolate for 14 days even if receive a negative test result.




Show Your Support and Take a Road Safety Pledge

Sefton Council are joining with Merseyside Road Safety Partnership to ask Sefton residents to show their support and take The Pledge.

As part of their on-going commitment to reducing the number of deaths on our roads, Merseyside Road Safety Partnership are asking everyone to join in and ‘take the pledge’ to be safer and more responsible road users. Whether you’re a driver, cyclist, motorcyclist or pedestrian, we all must share the responsibility and do our bit to make our roads safer.

By signing up to the campaign residents will receive support in the form of tips and advice on how to maximise road safety efforts. all year round. They will also be updated with the latest initiatives, engineering solutions and enforcement activities as the Merseyside Road Safety partnership continues to work towards fewer road deaths each year.

By signing up, individuals will show that they are prepared to put the safety of themselves and others first and that when they undertake a journey, they do so with consideration and respect for everyone.

To sign The Pledge, and to read more about the work Merseyside Road Safety Partnership does, visit

The Pledge

I will:

  • Consider the safety of others when I drive, walk or cycle
  • Drive at an appropriate speed (often slower than the speed limit) on the roads of Merseyside
  • Respect the presence of other, more vulnerable road users
  • Maintain a high driving standard to influence how others use the roads
  • Carry out regular checks on my vehicle, including tyres to ensure that my vehicle is safe and roadworthy
  • Through my actions, I will support the aims of the Merseyside Road Safety Partnership in making our roads safer for me, my family and others and reducing road casualties

Today’s World Suicide Prevention Day 2020 marked by release of updated Stay Alive app

Today, Thursday 10 September, is the International Association for Suicide Prevention’s (IASP) World Suicide Prevention Day.

This year the Stay Alive app has been updated with changes to services in Sefton following the Coronavirus pandemic.

Sefton residents are being encouraged to download, use and share the Stay Alive app which is available free on iOS and Android devices.

The Stay Alive app, which was developed by charity Grassroots, is a pocket-sized suicide prevention resource that gives people the tools to start a conversation about mental health. The app is designed to help both those who are having suicidal thoughts and those who are concerned about someone else who may be considering suicide.

World Suicide Prevention Day marks the start of the Sefton In Mind campaign, aimed at improving mental health of all residents. Look out for the hashtag #SeftonInMind to find information about local support services over the next 30 days of the campaign.

It is also five years since the launch of the ‘NO MORE Suicide’ strategy across Cheshire & Merseyside. During that time, there have been many successes and steps forward in the work to ensure all can remain safe from suicide.

The NO MORE Suicide Partnership Board brings together representatives from sectors including emergency services, suicide prevention charities, mental health trusts, HM prisons, public health and more. Through the Board’s effective collaborative working, Cheshire & Merseyside has rolled out extensive measures to prevent suicide, ensure safer care within health and care services and provide support after suicide.

Suicide prevention community training has been delivered to 3,662 people from 2017-2019. The training was delivered to a targeted work force of non-mental health specialists who have regular contact with potentially vulnerable people such as taxi drivers and barbers and welfare workers.

Support after suicide service, Amparo, are now commissioned to deliver their liaison service to those who have been bereaved by suicide in all nine local authorities across Cheshire & Merseyside. In five years, Amparo have provided immediate and practical information and support to 4,800 people who have been bereaved by or exposed to suicide.

Street triage teams have been adopted across Cheshire & Merseyside through partnerships between Merseyside Police, Cheshire Police, British Transport Police, North West Ambulance service and local NHS providers. The teams are staffed by both emergency and mental health professionals who can advise, coordinate, and assess the response needed for mental health related emergency and crisis incidents.

These are just some examples of the work that has been carried out and is ongoing across Cheshire & Merseyside. It is this work and more which meant that in July 2020 Cheshire & Merseyside had confirmation that they had received the Suicide Safer Communities Award from Living Works in Canada – becoming the first sub-region in the UK to receive the award.

Margaret Jones, Sefton’s Director of Public Health said: “We are delighted to have received the Suicide Safer Community Award from Living Works, which symbolises the fantastic collaborative work that has been ongoing over the last five years in Cheshire & Merseyside.

“It is an even greater accolade to be the first sub-region to receive the award. This is evidence of the huge amount of hard work that goes into working together as system partners to deliver programmes over a larger footprint area.

“There is of course more to be done and we will continue to work towards our ambition of Cheshire & Merseyside being a zero-suicide area.”

Jane Lunt, interim chief nurse, NHS South Sefton and NHS Southport & Formby CCGs said: “Since its introduction we have been strong advocates of the NO MORE Suicide strategy and continue to support and interact with the services and organisations that ensure the care and safety of people around the issues of suicide and suicide prevention. The updated Stay Alive app is a welcome addition to our resources with a wealth of useful information to support anyone who may have suicidal thoughts and to keep them safe.”

“The experiences and challenges of the past few months during the COVID-19 pandemic will have affected people in many different ways so it’s important that we use this year’s World Suicide Prevention Day to reinforce the message that there is support and advice for everyone.”

In addition to the Stay Alive app, a new 24/7 helpline – 0151 296 7200 – has been launched across Cheshire & Merseyside to help people struggling with their mental health.

People can contact:

Cheshire Wirral Partnership – Call 0800 145 6485 (For Adults and Children & Young People)

Mersey Care Mental Health Trust – Call 0151 296 7200 (Adults)

Alder Hey Crisis Care Team – Call 0151 293 3577 (For Children & Young People in Liverpool & Sefton)

North West Boroughs Healthcare Trust – Call 0800 051 1508 if you live in Halton, Knowsley, St Helens and Warrington (For adults, children and young people)

Support is available from:

Samaritans – A safe place to talk 24 hours a day about whatever is troubling you Call 116 123

Papyrus – For Children and Young people under 35 who are experiencing thoughts of suicide or anyone concerned that a young
Call 0800 068 41 41

Amparo – Support for anyone affected by a suicide
Call 0300 088 9255





Sefton’s Early Help Team helping to make a young girl’s voice heard

Sefton’s Early Help team are delighted to help an inspirational young person, who struggles with a communication disorder, to make her voice heard and support others through her own website.

Sixteen year-old Ellen from Crosby has been diagnosed with Developmental Language Disorder (DLD) which is a type of speech, language and communication need that affects the way children understand and use language. It is more common than autism with up to two children in every classroom having the disorder.

Living with DLD has meant through her life, Ellen has struggled to express herself and process complex sentences and to feel heard preferring to communicate by writing words down or making videos.

Hannah Howard from Sefton’s Early Help team said: “Like many other young people with a similar condition, Ellen feels that she is not heard because she can’t communicate easily, and people’s patience, belief in her and understanding is varied and often limited. This has had an effect on her education as well as her social and emotional wellbeing however, Ellen has said that having the support from people who have really listened has made a massive difference.”

“I have been absolutely inspired by Ellen. As a professional I have always strived to listen and put every child at the centre of what I do. Ellen has reminded me of the importance of us all taking the time to increase our understanding and knowledge around individual needs and that taking extra time to ensure a child has a voice is paramount.”

Ellen’s mum Roisin said: “Ellen has received support from Sefton’s Early Help team who have been there to help stop us getting to crisis point and their support has been immeasurable. The way they put Ellen first shines through, and they always come back to, ‘what does Ellen want’. They have been ‘Ellen’s voice’ and she really feels they have enabled her to be heard.”

“We have also received amazing support from the Venus Centre in Sefton which provides counselling, her head teacher at Holy Family Catholic High School, and Speech and language therapists at Alder Hey.

“They are helping to empower Ellen so she can achieve her full potential by continuing to promote communication, give practical advice and encouragement, whilst putting Ellen’s voice at the centre of everything they do.”

With her support network on board, Ellen has used her own experiences to help others by developing a website. ‘This is DLD’, not only gives a personal insight into Ellen’s experience of living with the disorder but also gives help and advice to people who have difficulties expressing themselves. The websites which contains videos and pictures also gives advice to practitioners and  teachers on how they can help a child with DLD, such as giving enough time to respond and using pictures sometimes instead of words.

Ellen said; “When you struggle with communication, life can be hard for you and your family as you need words for everything. Often I have felt invisible. However, over the last year I have had Alison from Sefton Speech and Language therapy, Paula from Venus and Hannah from Early Help supporting me and my family. They listened and followed things through. They believed in me and helped me find my voice and speak out about the things that mattered to me.

“I wanted to help give a voice to all those children and families in the same situation as us. It is important that they too are seen and heard, so with my Uncle’s help, I have created a website to try and get the message out to the right people so things can change. I want people to understand what it is like growing up in a place without a voice and how they can help make life easier. None of this costs money, only time. Everyone deserves a fair chance.”

Ellen’s ‘This is DLD’ website can be found at

Merseyside Collective Switch members save £300 a year on energy bills

In the last collective switching round, members of the Merseyside Collective Switch saved an average of £300 a year by switching to a better energy tariff.

 The Merseyside Collective Switch has been running since 2013, and is one of the longest running Local Authority Collective Switches in the country. Together, we’ve helped local people save over £1.5 million on their energy bills.

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