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Wickersley Partnership Trust transforms sports hall into new Covid-19 testing centre

Following the recent closure of schools, we have been working hard behind the scenes to temporarily transform our Cranworth Road and The Gainsborough Academy sports halls into Covid-19 test centres. Starting this week – across both sites – around 1100 members of staff, and 500 vulnerable children/children of key workers will be tested weekly, in an effort to reduce the spread of infection amongst those still attending and working in our schools.

It took one day for Lawson Property Services to set up the test centre, building all of the booths and partitions to enable us to start rolling out the 17,550 tests we have available. This means we now have four testing stations at the Cranworth Road centre, and two further stations at The Gainsborough Academy – with capacity to expand both centres if and when we need.

Melissa Jenkinson, teacher at Rawmarsh Ashwood Primary School commented: “It is a speedy process and I’m happy to have it done weekly with it being a very quick result. It means that I know I am then safe to go into school.” 

Staff and pupils have been allocated a weekly day and time for their tests, and will be transported to and from the centres by buses. 

Any positive results will be communicated to the staff or parent of the pupil within half an hour of the test. Those who test positive will be told to isolate in line with guidance from the official Test and Trace app.

Helen O’Brien, CEO of Wickersley Partnership Trust added: “At Wickersley Partnership Trust, we have a whole trust approach to mental health and well-being so pupils and teachers can thrive. We are committed to making sure staff and pupils are kept safe and protected from harm. Although it has been a massive undertaking to build a testing centre from the ground up, I am immensely proud to be in a position to use our resources to support our community and ensure staff and pupils are safe during this unprecedented time.”