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Last reviewed on 18 October 2021
Ref: 42950
School types: All · School phases: All

The DfE recommends you create a contingency plan that outlines what your school would do to respond to a local outbreak of COVID-19. Download and adapt our template to save you time writing your own.

18 October 2021: we updated our templates to reflect the latest contingency framework for schools.

For both primary and secondary schools, we replaced reference to Public Health England (PHE) with the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA), which from 1 October took over PHE’s functions related to COVID-19.

We also removed sections on:
  • Shielding, as those previously considered clinically extremely vulnerable (CEV) won't be advised to shield again in case of an outbreak
  • Limiting wraparound care attendance to those that need it most, as it's no longer recommended by the DfE
For primary schools, we:
  • Removed a mention of the reintroduction of asymptomatic testing for staff, as the DfE continues to recommend twice-weekly testing for staff (previously asymptomatic testing was due to be in place only until the end of September 2021)
  • Added a section on increasing the use of home testing by staff as an outbreak management measure

The DfE's latest contingency framework says schools should have an outbreak management plan describing what they would do in the case of an outbreak and/or if it is recommended that they reintroduce measures to help reduce COVID-19 transmission. The plan should be kept ‘robust and up to date’ (see the section 'Contingency planning' of the framework).

Make sure your plan follows current DfE guidance by downloading our template below.

Download our template 

The template is based on the DfE's contingency framework, which sets out measures that your school may consider taking, or be advised to take if there’s a local outbreak of COVID-19.

In the case of an outbreak, you will find out which measures your school is advised to take from:

  • Your local authority
  • Your local UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) health protection team
  • Your local director of public health 
  • The national government

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