Early Years Update - 27.01.21

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dan barton

Dear colleagues

 We understand that an issue that is very high on your list of concerns is that of COVID-19 Lateral Flow Testing for Early Years employees. Please find below a letter regarding how we are working to roll this out across the early years sector.

Many thanks

Dan Barton

Assistant Director, Education and Skills

Lateral Flow testing letter - LFT Early Years 27.1.21.doc


Early Years Weekly Attendance Survey – Please action on Wednesday

As explained in last week’s bulletin, the Department for Education have decided that we need to return to weekly collections while the current national COVID restrictions are in place.

We would like to thank you for your continued assistance with this piece of work.

Attendance Survey

Home learning – activities to support speech, language and communication

Following on from research carried out by Ofsted linked to lessons learned from the first lockdown, it was found that in the area of speech, language and communication some children had regressed during this time. The EY team have developed some weekly ideas to help support practitioners and teachers with home learning. All of the activities support the prime area of speech, language and communication.  Each week there will be a range of activities for practitioners to share with parents to support home and remote learning, including activities that promote language and communication,  books and some extension activities linked to the rhyme or theme for that week. We hope you will enjoy sharing these activities with your families.

Chat Play Share - Incy Wincy Week 1 completed.pdf

Children's Mental Health Week 2021

Mental Health week

Nationally, Children’s Mental Health Week is taking place on 1-7 February 2021. This year's theme is ‘Express Yourself’.

In Cumbria, we would love to hear from our Early Years Providers about ways that you have helped your children and families to adapt and keep going, throughout the pandemic.

We are inviting you to send photos of activities that you have done with children to provide calm, nurture and consistency during this strange time.

Please send your contributions in digital format to Lucy.Pye@cumbria.gov.uk by the end of Thursday 4th February. All entries received will be entered into a prize draw

Children open to social care

As previously, where a child is open to social care and had a Child Protection Plan or Child in Need plan, and the child is NOT attending the setting, please contact the child's Social Worker.

The Social Worker will contact the family to discuss their needs and ensure children are safe and engaging in home learning.

Additional restrictions grant

Local authorities have been allocated a sum of money to support businesses who are suffering as a result of national and local restrictions and that fall outside of the main grant schemes. Local authorities have been given the discretion to develop their own grant schemes.

Please follow the link below for your local council to check if you are able to apply:

Allerdale - https://www.allerdale.gov.uk/en/news-and-blog/new-additional-restrictions-grant-discretionary-scheme-launched-for-businesses-in-alllerdale/

Barrow - https://www.barrowbc.gov.uk/coronavirus/additional-restrictions-grant/#:~:text=The%20funding%20is%20finite%20and,mandated%20to%20close%20for%20lockdown.

Carlisle - https://www.carlisle.gov.uk/Business/More-Business/ARG

Copeland - https://www.copeland.gov.uk/additional-restrictions-grant

Eden - https://www.eden.gov.uk/coronavirus-covid-19/support-for-businesses/

South Lakeland - https://www.southlakeland.gov.uk/business-and-trade/business-support-grants-coronavirus-covid-19/#Addrestgrant

Ways to Welfare - Help is here

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected people in lots of ways, and whilst Cumbrian communities have been fantastic at supporting each other, many people are finding they need a bit of extra help and support.

These webpages provide information about support available to people in Cumbria, online and on the phone. https://www.cumbria.gov.uk/welfare/default.asp 

The message is ‘Don't wait for problems to get worse, there are organisations that can help, and it's better to get advice sooner rather than later’

Cumbria County Council can provide urgent help and emergency support, including basic food and essential items, or if you (or someone you know) are struggling to cope with your current situation for whatever reason.

Support Helpline - 0800 783 1966 (Monday to Thursday 9am to 5pm, Friday 9am to 4.30pm).

Emails to COVID19support@cumbria.gov.uk will receive a response within one working day.

Please display this poster for your families – Emergency Support Helpline Poster A4.pdf

Family Learning opportunities from the Community Learning and Skills team

A reminder that Family Learning has moved online to help support schools, nurseries, parents and carers during COVID 19. You can check out the new offer of QUICK-SKILL courses to help you through lock-downs, self-isolating, home-learning, homework and catching up here – Family Learning Flyer.pdf

You can also direct people to the Community Learning and Skills website.

Resource packs

The Childminder and PVI resource packs are available here:

Childminder Resource Pack

PVI Resource Pack

The early years team have updated the risk assessment in the light of lockdown and the most recent guidance documents. The updated document can be found here: Risk assessment and checklist