Dear parents / carers
I am writing to inform you that we now have approximately 10 confirmed cases of scarlet fever in pupils at school.
We have been advised by Public Health not to hold events involving members of the public on the school site currently. Unfortunately, we have had to make the difficult decision to postpone the Christmas Chocolate Bingo this evening. Money paid towards ticket prices will be refunded in due course.
At this stage, Public Health have advised us the school should remain open, but if you think you or child have scarlet fever, you should:
• see your GP or contact NHS 111 as soon as possible
• make sure that you/your child takes the full course of any antibiotics prescribed by the doctor.
• stay at home, away from nursery, school or work for at least 24 hours after starting the antibiotic treatment, to avoid spreading the infection.
Over the remainder of the school term, we will enhance cleaning of surfaces, make hand sanitiser available, and encourage hand hygiene to avoid the spreading of infection.
Although scarlet fever is usually a mild illness, it should be treated with antibiotics to minimise the risk of complications and reduce the spread to others.
The symptoms of scarlet fever include a sore throat, headache, fever, nausea and vomiting. This is followed by a fine red rash which typically first appears on the chest and stomach, rapidly spreading to other parts of the body. On more darkly-pigmented skin, the scarlet rash may be harder to spot, but it should feel like ‘sandpaper’. The face can be flushed red but pale around the mouth.
Children who have had chickenpox recently are more likely to develop more serious infection during an outbreak of scarlet fever and so parents should remain vigilant for symptoms such as a persistent high fever, cellulitis (skin infection) and arthritis (joint pain and swelling). If you are concerned for any reason please seek medical assistance immediately.
If your child has an underlying condition which affects their immune system, you should contact your GP or hospital doctor to discuss whether any additional measures are needed.
Should the situation or Public Heath advice change, we will inform you as soon as possible.
Dr Jane Tinker