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Update for early years settings - 24 April

Letter from the Secretary of State

The Secretary of State has written a letter to early years settings, schools and colleges and expressed his gratitude for the work you are doing and for your continued focus to support children of critical workers and for the most vulnerable children. 

Latest guidance for Early Years and Childcare Providers

The Government has released updated guidance for Early Years providers entitled ‘Actions for early years and childcare providers during the coronavirus outbreak’.

We are taking up concerns around the future sustainability of childcare providers with MPs, and will continue to work with sector leads nationally to support the Cumbrian PVI sector as we recognise your vital importance and essential contribution to the county.

As we await further guidance regarding funding, please contact the Early Years team if you need any further information or support.

Testing for Essential Workers

The Government has announced that critical workers in England can now access COVID-19 testing. This includes education and childcare workers. 

From today, employers can register and refer staff who are self-isolating, and employees will be able to book a test directly for themselves or members of their household who are experiencing symptoms.

Temporary changes to the EYFS

The Secretary of State for Education has provided the following information regarding temporary changes to the framework subject to parliamentary agreement. The proposed changes are:

  • Allow providers greater flexibility to respond to changes in workforce availability and potential fluctuations in demand, whilst still providing care that is high quality and safe
  • Providers not being required to meet existing learning and development requirements
  • Providers not being required to complete the EYFS profile assessment for 2019/20
  • Providers not being required to undertake the 2YO progress check during the Covid-19 period
  • Exceptions to the qualifications that staff hold in order to be counted in ratio requirements

To keep up to date with these changes the DfE advises Providers to follow the guidance on the government website.

Reporting attendance of vulnerable children

We are very pleased to say that vulnerable children, as identified by colleagues within Social Care, are now starting to access the Early Years and School Hubs. Please see below for the contact details for hubs and schools to report the attendance of vulnerable children. When vulnerable children do not attend, settings are asked to call the contact in their area to notify them of the absence and whether they have made contact with the child's family, as per recent government guidance.  

The area contacts for the Education Hubs are:

New schedule for your bulletins

We would like to let you know that we will be sending our updates out just three times a week from today, every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

Please look out for our updates, as they will contain important advice and guidance on our response to the Covid-19 situation.

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