Early Years Provider Updates | COVID-19 Edition 22

This article has been brought to you by Slough Borough Council's Service Lead for Early Years and Prevention, Michael Jarrett, for the attention of the Early Years Sector.

Please find below communications from the Early Years and Prevention Service to keep you informed of various different initiatives and government updates for 27/04/2020. We hope you find this informative and if you have any suggestions about content please contact us on earlyyears@slough.gov.uk.

It is important to keep in contact with families during this time, so please share this information across all of your contacts.

What’s New

A Parent’s Guide to Promoting Early Learning and Development at Home (0-5 years)
Supporting Families During the Coronavirus Pandemic


Edited by Debra R. Laxton University of Chichester


Planning for Transition when Schools are Closed


Released Today |  Free Information Book Explaining the Coronavirus to Children, Illustrated by Gruffalo Illustrator Axel Scheffler


New Government Updates for 27/04/2020

Early Years Foundation Stage Statutory Framework (EYFS)

The standards that school and childcare providers must meet for the learning, development and care of children from birth to 5.  Added guidance to the temporarily disapplied, and modified certain elements of the EYFS statutory framework. Click here for more information.

COVID-19 | Temporary Disapplications to the Early Years Foundation Stage

Foundation Years hosted a video podcast with the Department for Education (DfE) to share the latest information on the disapplications and answer your questions. Please click the video below to learn more.


Actions For Early Years and Childcare Providers During the Coronavirus Outbreak

What childcare services early years settings, childminders and local authorities need to provide during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. Update to reflect changes in Early Years Statutory Framework. To learn more about this please click here.

Ofsted | Coronavirus (COVID-19) Rolling Update

Ofsted guidance and information relating to Coronavirus (COVID-19) for schools, early years, children's social care and further education and skills providers. Updated to note that temporary legislation relating to the early years foundation stage is now passed in parliament.  Click here to read the full article.

COVID-19 | Guidance for Schools and Other Educational Settings

Guidance and advice about Coronavirus (COVID-19) in educational settings for staff, parents and carers, pupils and students.

Added guidance on 'Using clusters and hubs to maintain educational provision' and 'Changes to school admission appeals due to coronavirus'. Added guidance on managing school premises during the coronavirus outbreak. To read about the guidance in full please click here

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Testing Extended to All Essential Workers Who Have Symptoms

The Government has announced that all essential workers in England and Scotland, and members of their households who are showing symptoms of Coronavirus (COVID-19) can now be tested. This list of essential workers includes education and childcare staff: support and teaching staff, social workers and specialist education professionals in addition to social care staff.

Booking is done through a new online system. Employers can register and refer self-isolating staff, and employees are able to book a test directly for themselves or members of their household who are exhibiting symptoms. Employees can choose to visit one of the drive-through testing sites across the country, or to receive a home testing kit. To obtain a login to the employer referral portal, employers of essential workers should contact: portalservicedesk@dhsc.gov.uk.

Full details can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-getting-tested.

Safeguarding and Security Considerations for Video Conferencing in Education

Whilst there is no expectation for teachers to stream or provide recorded videos, many schools, colleges and universities are using video conferencing platforms to provide remote education. It is important for educational settings to ensure that they are making use of the security features and filters on any service they choose to use. You should refer to the service providers’ official support site which will assist in setting the right security features and filters.

We also recommend reviewing the guidance from the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) for organisations and individuals using video conferencing services securely.  Click here to view the guidance.

For business managers and IT staff considering which service to choose, you can refer to guidance from NCSC on considerations around video conferencing here.

We have published guidance to help education settings to follow safeguarding procedures when teaching remotely during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

The guidance can be found here:



Keeping in Touch and Targeted Support for Early Years Settings

During this unfamiliar time the team would like you to know that we are here to offer you support, in whatever way you may need it? We are on the other end of the phone or email and will continue to provide you with daily email updates. Even if you are currently closed the team can offer a range of support from discussing government guidance documents to reviewing local area initiatives.

We understand that this is a difficult period for everyone and in these uncertain times it can often help to share concerns, questions and queries with others, so please do keep in contact and pick up the phone anytime for a catch up.

You can email and call individual members of the team or for general enquiries contact earlyyears@slough.gov.uk or call 01753 476554.

If your setting is currently still open and are considering closure please discuss with the Early Years Service and for further information, advice or guidance please contact the team on 01753 476554 or email earlyyears@slough.gov.uk.


Announcement from the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care

The Secretary of State for Health and Social Care has announced that anyone in England who has symptoms of coronavirus and is classed as an essential worker, and members of their household who are currently experiencing symptoms, will be able get tested.

A new campaign will help essential workers in England to access testing – this includes staff working in early years settings.

From today, employers can register online and refer self-isolating staff, and from tomorrow employees will be able to book a test directly on gov.uk for themselves or members of their household who are experiencing symptoms – a high temperature or new continuous.

DfE Data Collection

The DfE have now requested that the Local Authority submits to them the total number of early years children (0 -4 year olds, excluding 4 year olds in reception) being cared for, every Monday and Thursday. Please can all providers (who are open) continue to submit registers every Friday but in addition to this please email earlyyears@slough.gov.uk before 12pm on Monday’s and Thursday’s with the following information:


Total Number of 0-4 Year Olds in Attendance Number of Children Who’s Parents are Critical Workers Number of Vulnerable Children


Domestic Abuse | Slough Safeguarding Partnership

Challenging times may result in the need to access specialist support, don’t be alone, attached are some resources that might be able to help.  You can also visit the Slough Safeguarding Partnership here to learn more.

Alternatively if you can also access the Slough Safeguarding Partnership newsletter by clicking here.

Mental Health and Wellbeing

If providers have any children or young people displaying any Mental Health and or well-being concerns, then please contact the East Berkshire Getting Help Service at CAMHSGettingHelpEast@berkshire.nhs.uk.