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Guidance and delivery schedule for Private, Voluntary and Independent (PVI) nurseries for tests

The Department for Education (DfE) is welcoming all Private, Voluntary and Independent (PVI) nurseries to the COVID-19 Education Testing Programme.

The rapid asymptomatic testing programme is being expanded to staff in PVI nurseries because it is crucial that action continues to be taken to break the chains of transmission of coronavirus by identifying asymptomatic positive cases in the community. Up to one in three people who have the virus do not have symptoms (they are asymptomatic), so could be spreading the disease unknowingly.

Settings will start receiving deliveries of lateral flow device (LFD) from 11 March, to be used from the week beginning 22 March. Staff will be asked to take their test kits home and carry out the test twice a week, preferably in the morning. Please note that you should not offer testing to children in early years settings.

Further guidance on asymptomatic home testing is available here. This guidance includes:

  • Guidance to support set-up of testing for staff, including a ‘how to guide’
  • In-depth information and videos on how to self-test from home
  • Clinical standard operating procedure for the tests. This provides comprehensive step by step information for settings delivering the testing programme.
  • Frequently asked questions
  • A delivery schedule providing you with your expected delivery dates and testing supplies

The process for how PVI nurseries order test kits is changing from Thursday 29 April. We are introducing a new online system for ordering test kits for testing at home. This means that you will be able to re-order test kits and better manage stock levels and deliveries to your nursery. Further information on how to order test kits is available here.

Going forward, the latest information and announcements will be available through the daily DfE sector bulletin. To receive the daily email directly, please use this subscription form.

Going forward, the DfE will be providing PVIs with the latest information and announcements using your Ofsted registered email account. They can also view the guidance on the DfE’s Primary Schools Document Sharing Platform.

If you have any questions, concerns or issues that are not addressed through the document sharing platform, please call the DfE coronavirus helpline on 0800 046 8687. Opening hours are Monday to Friday 8am to 6pm, Saturday and Sunday from 10am to 6pm.