Schools and Key Workers
The government has announced a closure of schools and other educational settings following the outbreak of coronavirus (COVID-19). The school closure is for the majority of school children and is underpinned by public health guidance to not mix socially.
Schools and education settings are being asked to continue to provide care for a limited number of children – children who are vulnerable, and children whose parents are critical to the Covid-19 response and cannot be safely cared for at home.
- Guidance for schools, childcare providers, colleges and local authorities in England on maintaining educational provision
Your child’s school or educational setting will have contacted you to identify if you are a key worker and want to continue to send your child to school. They will use this information to prioritise who they will offer places to. Please raise any queries that you have with your child’s school.
A national school closure of this kind is a significant step and is an important part of the government strategy to reduce the spread of Covid-19. The objective is to ensure that only children who cannot be looked after at home have access to support from the education system.
Guidance from the DfE is clear that if there is one key worker in the family then you can expect to continue to access education if you need it because you cannot make alternative arrangements (i.e. another parent staying at home or use of wider family etc.). The range of key workers is broad and if we are to deliver the governments objective and reduce social contact it is essential that places are only used where entirely necessary. To support families the government has announced a range of financial measures including support for those who cannot work during this time - 80% of wages.
The council is working with schools to continue education for those that need it. We are redeploying some of the council’s education staff to increase the capacity in the schools to help meet demand as well as asking schools’ staff to work in different location based on demand.
We would encourage you to raise any queries directly with your child’s school in the first instance. The council also have staff available to talk to you about any key worker questions or wider educational issues on 01452 426015 or email at COVIDSchoolenquiries@gloucestershire.gov.uk (please note this email address may not be available until Tuesday 24th March so please call in the first instance).