Dear Parents and caregivers,
I am writing to advise that our school has been invited to participate in research the WA Government is undertaking in partnership with Telethon Kids Institute. The research is part of DETECT: a larger study of particular groups in our community to determine the prevalence of COVID–19 in Western Australia. Education has been prioritised for inclusion.
Approximately 80 public schools across Western Australia will participate in the research. They represent a cross section of the community and include primary, secondary, education support, metropolitan and regional schools, and residential colleges.
The study will be rolled out across schools over the next few weeks. Participation is voluntary and consent will be sought from staff and parents, as well as students for the psychosocial survey component.
As part of the research, staff and students from 40 schools will be tested for COVID-19 at monthly intervals over a period of at least three months. These schools will be randomly selected by the researchers. All 80 schools will participate in the online survey component, providing information on how COVID-19 is impacting their physical, social and emotional wellbeing. All students, staff and parents would be encouraged to participate and TKI will work directly with schools.
I will provide further information, including a fact sheet from TKI, and consent forms in the coming days.
Our school’s involvement in this research will make a valuable contribution to better understanding the extent of COVID-19 in Western Australia and what measures are required to keep our communities safe during the pandemic.