CHILDREN at York schools are being urged to take extra precautions to help curb the spread of coronavirus following 'a significant rise' in positive cases.

Public health and children’s services leaders have written to parents and carers recommending additional Covid measures for pupils in the city.

The move follows a surge in the number of children and young people testing positive for Covid in the last few weeks, coupled with a rise in household transmission of the virus.

Local data shows that children are passing Covid to family members and into local communities which is leading to rising infection rates in adults, particularly older adults, who tend to be more vulnerable to the effects of both Covid and flu.

Parents are being asked to carry out daily lateral flow tests on their primary and secondary school students when they have been identified as a ‘close contact’ of someone who has Covid, or they live in the same household as someone who has the virus.

Where possible, parents should ensure their child takes a daily lateral flow test while waiting for their PCR test result. Provided the lateral flow test is negative they can return to school.

The updated guidance is temporary and will be reviewed every two weeks, taking into account the rate of infection in schools and the roll-out of the Covid-19 vaccination programme for 12 to 15-year-olds.

Cllr Ian Cuthbertson, the council’s executive member children, young people and education, said: “I know that parents, carers, teaching staff and young people in York have been working incredibly hard to minimise the spread of Covid and I’d like to thank them their continued efforts.

"We also recognise the impact Covid has had, and continues to have, on the lives of children, which is why we have committed to review this new advice after half term.

"I would urge parents, carers and children to support the new guidance as we continue to work together to reduce the spread of the virus.”

Sharon Stoltz, director of public health at City of York Council, said: “We have been working closely with schools and colleges in York since the pandemic started, and their tireless efforts have played a huge role in minimising covid rates in York.

"But with infection rates rising, it is vital that we recommend families take additional action now, before cases rise further. We will continue to work with partners to assess the impact of the additional measures, before re-assessing whether they are needed in two weeks’ time.”

For more information on how to get a lateral flow test in York visit To find out more about how to get a PCR test, visit