COVID-19 Policy – Updated March 2022

On the 21st February 2022, the government published their next phase Covid-19 response.  The government have stated that this is a virus that we are having to learn to live with and that it is imperative to reduce the disruption to children and young people’s education.  It is a priority for early years education, childminders, schools and colleges to continue to deliver face-to-face, high quality education and care.  The government have also stated that ‘Evidence is clear that being out of education causes significant harm to educational attainment, life chances, as well as mental and physical health.’

There is no longer a legal requirement for people with coronavirus (Covid-19) to self-isolate, however if you have any of the main symptoms of Covid-19 or a positive test result, the public health advice is to stay at home and avoid contact with other people.

This advice is for:

  • People with any of the main symptoms of Covid-19
  • People who have received a positive Covid-19 lateral flow test (LFT) or polymerase chain reaction test (PCR) result
  • People who live in the same household as, or who have had close contact with, someone who has Covid-19
  • Children and young people who usually attend an education or childcare setting

If your child develops Covid-19 symptoms or has a positive test

As stated above, it is no longer a legal requirement to self-isolate, however we would request that the advice given by public health is adhered to.

Children and young people with Covid-19 should not attend their education setting while they are infectious. They should take an LFD test from 5 days after their symptoms started (or the day their test was taken if they did not have any symptoms) followed by another one the next day.  If both these test results are negative, they should return to their educational setting if they normally attend one, as long as they feel well enough to do so and do not have a temperature. 

We will continue to:

  • safeguard – local agencies, services and settings should work together to actively look for signs of harm given the greater risk of harm that some children may have been exposed to through Covid-19
  • support children’s learning, development and wellbeing – continue to follow the early years foundation stage statutory framework (EYFS)
  • support vulnerable children
  • Promote good hand hygiene
  • Promote the ‘Catch it, Bin it, Kill it’ advice
  • Use PPE such as gloves and aprons, as appropriate
  • Provide hand sanitiser to all staff, children and visitors
  • Maintain regular cleaning of equipment and resources
  • Ventilate rooms

Staffing

If we experience high staff and child absences due to Covid-19, then we may choose to temporarily mix age groups of children who would otherwise be educated and cared for separately.  We will take into account ratios and the needs of all children. 

Should the situation arise where we are only able to offer limited spaces to children, due to Covid-19 absences, then we will prioritise children of critical workers and vulnerable children, then 3-4 year olds (who are due to transition to school the following September) and finally our younger children.

In the unlikely event that we do not have enough staff well enough to open safely, then we will inform parents as soon as is practically possible. We will not be responsible for providing alternative care and our usual terms and conditions apply.

Local Outbreak

In the event of a local outbreak, we will follow our Local Outbreak Policy 11.1

Travelling abroad

All children and staff travelling to England must adhere to current government travel advice.

If your day 5 LFD test result is positive, you can continue taking LFD tests until you receive 2 consecutive negative test results.