COVID-19 | DfE Update for Education Settings

This article has been brought to you by Slough Borough Council's Interim Senior EYFS Advisory Teacher, Karen Loft on behalf of the DfE. This is for the attention of all education settings.

New Devices for Disadvantaged Children and Young People in School or College are Available to Order Through the Get Help with Technology Service

The Get Help with Technology (GHwT) service is providing an additional 500,000 laptops and tablets so that disadvantaged children and young people in school or college can access remote education and social care services.

There are also 4G wireless routers available to order. These do not come with SIM cards, therefore your school or college will need to arrange your own data plans.

Schools and colleges will receive ‘invitation to order’ emails in batches throughout November and December. We will use the contact details provided on the GHwT service. Please ensure your details are up to date as soon as possible.

The number of devices that you can order is based on your allocation. This can be viewed in the GHwT service, along with guidance about how allocations have been calculated.

The new devices come with factory settings and will not include Department for Education safeguarding software.

Your school or college is responsible for ensuring appropriate content filters and device management systems are in place before distributing devices to children and young people.

We are offering various grants to help schools, colleges and local authorities with:

  • The cost of technical support to set up and reset devices they received from GHwT
  • Providing connectivity support to children and young people who do not otherwise have access to suitable internet connectivity at home

Further information about these grants, including the eligibility criteria, is available on GOV.​UK.

Information for Schools and Colleges on Asymptomatic COVID-19 Testing

Thank you for continuing to encourage staff, students and pupils to test twice-weekly at home. This is a key part of reducing transmission of COVID-19 in secondary schools and colleges and reducing case rates across settings.

To help pupils understand the importance of testing and to encourage greater uptake, we recommend you think about the best ways of engaging your students in regular testing. We have provided a toolkit to support you in encouraging pupils and students to test regularly.

The toolkit provides strategies, best practice case studies and online resources to help increase participation levels. This includes sending GOV.​UK automatic text reminders to test, working with student groups to encourage testing and incentivising testing through reward schemes.

We recommend that you use the start of this term as an opportunity to re-emphasise the importance of testing.

Students who find it especially challenging to test using lateral flow devices (LFDs) should be treated sensitively and signposted to additional support available to help students test.