Schools are not being asked to provide the Department for Education with figures for Covid-related absences this week, Tes understands.
The portal that schools use to provide figures to the government has now closed, according to an email sent to schools by a local authority, which has been seen by Tes.
The email says: “We have just been informed that the DfE portal is now closed until September, and that there is therefore no need for schools to provide the daily DfE portal updates for the remainder of term. I am sorry for the late notification. However, we have only just been made aware.”
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The move comes after the most recent figures had shown that more than 820,000 pupils were off school for Covid-related reasons.
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This included three-quarters of a million pupils who were self-isolating after being identified as a contact of a Covid case.
This week the responsibility for identifying contacts of Covid cases in schools was transferred from schools to NHS Test and Trace. Schools have been told that, under the new contact tracing system, it is only expected that each case will result in a small number of contacts being identified.
The Department for Education has been approached for comment.