Free COVID-19 risk assessment pack
Before you reopen you must ensure everyone remains safe in your setting. This FREE resource pack contains COVID-19 risk assessment and parental agreement forms.
We aim to keep this webpage updated as more information is made available by the Government
You must tell Ofsted if there is a confirmed case of COVID-19 at you childminder business. You should also tell us if you have to close your setting as a result. There is a specific online form for this which you can access here
With the idenfication of a new COVID variant Omicron, the Government has updated its Action for Early Years and Childcare guidance.
The main changes are:
Tracing close contacts and self-isolation Close contacts in early years settings are now being identified by NHS Test and Trace and education and childcare settings are not expected to undertake contact tracing. All individuals who who have been identified as a close contact of a suspected or confirmed case of the Omicron variant of COVID-19, irrespective of vaccination status and age, will be contacted directed and required to self-isolate immediately and will be asked to book a PCR test. They will be informed by the local health protection team or NHS Test and Trace if they fall into this category. Further actions for education and childcare settings may be advised by a local Incident Management Team (IMT) investigating a confirmed or suspected case of the Omicron variant of COVID-19. For everyone else, self-isolation rules are unchanged.
Children and staff travelling from abroad
All children and staff travelling to England must adhere to travel legislation, details of which are set out in travel to England from another country during coronavirus (COVID19). All travellers arriving into the UK should isolate and get a PCR test by ‘day two’ after arrival – this will be legally required from 30 November. They may end their isolation once they receive a negative result. If the result is positive, they should continue to isolate and follow rules on isolation following a positive test. Parents travelling abroad should bear in mind the impact on their child’s education which may result from any requirement to quarantine or isolate upon return.
There is a temporary recommendation on the wearing of face coverings in communal areas for staff and visitors. Health advice continues to be that children aged under 11 years old should not wear face coverings. Face coverings do not need to be worn when outdoors.
Name Change Public Health England (PHE) has changed its name to UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) to reflect name change
The Department for Education and NHS Test and Trace have updated their Frequently Asked Questions around who needs to self isolate if they are in close contact with a positive case. They have included new guidance for if a child can't attend your setting because they rely on an adult who is self-isolating to bring them.
You can read the updated FAQ's here
From today, as we move to Step 4 of the Coronavirus roadmap, there are no longer any Government restrictions regarding COVID- 19. The Government says 'This marks a new phase in the government’s response to the pandemic, moving away from stringent restrictions on everyone’s day-to-day lives, towards advising people on how to protect themselves and others, alongside targeted interventions to reduce risk.' And that 'As COVID-19 becomes a virus that we learn to live with, there is now an imperative to reduce the disruption to children’s education - particularly given that the direct clinical risks to children are extremely low, and every adult has been offered a first vaccine and the opportunity for two doses by mid-September.'
The Actions for early years and childcare providers during the COVID-19 pandemic guidance has been updated accordingly. You will find that they have now moved or removed several of the sections from the guidance.
There is no longer a recommendation to restrict the number of settings a child can attend.
Face coverings are no longer required for visitors to your setting, but they are still recommended in 'closed or crowded spaces where you may come into contact with people you don't normally meet' or if advised by Public Health because of an outbreak - we expect that many childminders will keep the current measures they have such as parents still wearing face coverings if they enter your setting or bringing and collecting their children without entering.
Clinically Extremely Vulnerable children should still attend your setting unless they are are advised not to by their health team. If you work with assistants or co-childminders who are clinically extremely vulnerable, they can still attend work. There is separate guidance about protecting the clinically extremely vulnerable here
Tracing close contacts and isolation. From Step 4, close contacts will be identified via NHS Test and Trace and education settings will no longer be expected to undertake contact tracing- however you may still be contacted to help identify any close contacts if needed. It is good practice to keep a record of visitors to your setting and this along with your registers of attendance of children and any staff, will help with this. You will find a link to template letters you can use for this if you wish.
From August 16th children under the age of 18 years old will no longer be required to self-isolate if they are contacted by NHS Test and Trace as a close contact of a positive COVID-19 case. Instead, they may be asked to take a PCR COVID test. (this is the same date that all adults who are fully vaccinated will no longer need to self-isolate if they have been in contact with a positive case).
There is a possibility that in the event of an outbreak, your local public health director may advise you to introduce some temporary control measures.
It is still recommended that you continue with twice weekly testing until the end of September when this will be reviewed. If your test is positive, you should self isolate, take a PCR test and continue to self isolate until the PCR results are back. If the PCR test is positive, you will continue to self-isolate, if the PCR test is taken within 2 days of the positive rapid lateral flow test, and is negative, it overrides the rapid lateral flow test and you can return to work, as long as you don't have COVID-19 symptoms.
Test and Trace Support Payments Some staff, parents and carers may be eligible for a one-off Test and Trace Support Payment of £500 if they have been told to self-isolate. This is payable in one lump sum from the local authority.
Admitting children back to the setting it is recognised that you may want not accept children back to your setting if they still have COVID symptoms.
You must still notify Ofsted if there is a confirmed case in your setting. You should also inform Ofsted if you have had to close because of a COVID case.
General Control measures
You should still:
Ensure good hygiene for everyone, including regular and effective handwashing
Maintain appropriate cleaning regimes, using standard products such as detergents
Keep occupied spaces well ventilated
Follow public health advice on testing, self-isolation and managing confirmed cases of COVID-19.
Finally the DfE has prepared a Questions and Answers document that may help you.
It is recommended that we wash our hands using soap and hot water for at least 20 seconds or the time it takes to sing Happy Birthday twice or Twinkle Twinkle Little Star once.
This video shows the correct way of washing hands
Public Health England have produced a range of posters and other information. You need to sign up to use, but it is a quick easy process and this means you will be kept informed if other resources are made avaialble too.
Tom Fletcher who is a member of the McFly band and well loved children's author has produced this video to visually show children the importance of washing hands
Protecting Childrens skin
Some children are developing red and sore hands from washing their hands more frequently, as water removes natural oils from the skin. The best way to alleviate this is to provide simple moisturising cream such as E45 to use after handwashing. It is advisable to gain parents written permission for this or to ask parents to provide a moisturising cream of their choice and give written permission for its use.
Explaining Coronavirus to children
This video explains Coronavirus in a fun way aimed at not causing alarm
This graphic is a child friendly way of explaining the virus to children
Public Health England has some 'fun e-Bug teaching resources' including Horrid Hands and Super Sneezes
Childline has produced information for children who may be concerned about the virus and what they hear on the news. It includes suggestions of what children can do if they are worried.
dvice carefully regarding this.
Department for Education Helpline
The Department for Education in England has launched a new helpline to answer questions about COVID-19 for education establishments. You can contact the helpline between 8am and 6pm, Monday to Friday by calling 0800 046 8687 or emailing [email protected]
Support for Childminding UK Members
We will continue to email Childminding UK Members with important updates as they become available. Members can also contact our staff team for advice. While we will do our very best to support you and answer questions, please do remember that Childminding UK are not experts in COVID-19.
FREE online training
Some companies are offering FREE online courses to support providers. We will aim to add to this list as we hear of others
Some companies are offering FREE temporary subscriptions to their learning resources for parents, teachers, carers to help keep children engaged in learning during any self-isolation or setting or school closure. Other companies are making us aware of FREE resources they offer that may be useful at this time too. We will aim to add to this list as we hear of any more.
Teachers, parents and carers, some free resources to help you with home learning are available from Mathematics Mastery, a non profit organisation has resources for Key Stage 1, 2 and 3.
EYFS Home - NEW! EYFS Home- A free, daily set of activities for 3-5 year-olds, linked to the English EYFS Early Years Learning Goals.
Safer Internet Centre has a list of online safety activities you can do from home for all ages
FREE for 30 days Widget Symbols to support people help parents, teachers and carers who use symbols and help them realise their full potential, no matter what their age, ability or background.
TeachKloud is giving away, 40 Yoga poses and activities and a 46-page Resource with 20 fun and easy open-ended learning opportunities using natural materials
Learning through Landscapes This is our second week of sustainable learning and play activities, while children are at home due to Covid-19. There will be many more resources and ideas over the coming weeks.
BBC Bitesize There are free videos, guides, activities, games and quizzes by level and subject, all available.
Books at Press are offering Free Powerpoint Jigsaw, Easter Board Game and Dominoes to play at home or school Email [email protected] and ask for FREE EASTER ACTIVITIES.
Foundations Software have gathered 'bunch of free resources ' from some well-known celebrities and children’s entertainers. Links to all can be found here
At Speech Link Multimedia Ltd we believe that every child should have access to support for their speech, language and communication needs to help them reach their full potential. Welcome to the Parent Portal, our new parent support site for children with speech and language difficulties.
Orchard Toys Ltd have got you covered with over 120 free downloadable activity sheets
Bloomsbury Education have an online library of activity ideas to do with children aged between 0-5. Bloomsbury Early Years will be available for free for the duration of the Coronavirus pandemic.