Early Years Provider Updates | COVID-19 Edition 25a

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 01/05/2020. 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

Continuous Professional Development

During the pandemic it may be appropriate for some staff to complete some online training to support their continuous professional development. We have compiled a spreadsheet that contains some e learning opportunities which you may want to explore in line with each employee’s development needs.

You may consider requesting furloughed staff to complete some online training whilst they are not officially working, if you do this please ensure you are following the guidance below as outlined in the Guidance document ‘Check if you can claim for your employees' wages through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme’.

Furloughed employees can engage in training, as long as in undertaking the training the employee does not provide services to, or generate revenue for, or on behalf of their organisation or a linked or associated organisation. Furloughed employees should be encouraged to undertake training.

Where training is undertaken by furloughed employees, at the request of their employer, they are entitled to be paid at least their appropriate national minimum wage for this time. In most cases, the furlough payment of 80% of an employee’s regular wage, up to the value of £2,500, will provide sufficient monies to cover these training hours. However, where the time spent training attracts a minimum wage entitlement in excess of the furlough payment, employers will need to pay the additional wages (see National Minimum Wage Section for more details). https://www.gov.uk/guidance/claim-for-wage-costs-through-the-coronavirus-job-retention-scheme

Message From Allison Bradshaw | East Berkshire Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS)


You can find out about MHST/Getting Help Offer for the summer term here.

New Government Updates for 30/04/2020 & 01/05/2020

Temporary Extension of Eligibility Criteria for the 2 Year Old Entitlement

During the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, we are temporarily extending eligibility criteria for the 2 year old entitlement to include children assessed as being vulnerable and meeting the definition in Section 17 of the Children Act (1989) and who have No Recourse to Public Funds (NRPF).

The Secretary of State for Education has decided to temporarily extend eligibility for the free early education entitlement to 2 year olds from families in receipt of Section 17 support who have NRPF, for the duration of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak only.

This is to support their safety and wellbeing whilst restrictions are in place. Eligible children are British-born children who are entitled to be in the country yet are not receiving support by virtue of their parents’ immigration status, which triggers the NRPF. This is a temporary measure during Coronavirus (COVID-19) and is intended to support vulnerable children not usually eligible for a free place through the free early education entitlement.

Local authorities will be reimbursed for eligible children who have taken up a temporary free 2 year old place by attending an early years childcare setting during Coronavirus (COVID-19). We are working on the process to reimburse local authorities and further guidance will be made available in due course.

We will inform local authorities when this temporary extension of the eligibility criteria has come to an end.

To find out further information please click here.

SEND Code of Practice | 0 to 25 years

Guidance on the special educational needs and disability (SEND) system for children and young people aged 0 to 25, from 1 September 2014. You can find out about guidance on changes to the law on education, health and care needs assessments and plans due to Coronavirus here

Ofsted | 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 include that some schools, further education providers and early years providers have contacted us asking us to publish the report of their recent inspection.

We had said that we would publish those reports only when providers reopen as normal for all children/students. We are now writing to all providers with reports in the pipeline to ask whether they would like their report published as soon as possible. If they say yes, we will publish their report shortly.

Click here to view the update full

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.


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


Early Help Provision

We appreciate that our children, young people and families may experience some challenges in the coming weeks.

Where possible, the Early Help Hub will continue to provide support to families through our family support. If you require support from the EH Hub team and you have a family support worker already, please contact them directly or call us on 01753 476589.

If you are not currently supported by our family support workers but require support and advice, please call us on 01753 476589 and our Family Information Service will be happy to provide you with information and advice to ensure you get the support you need. If this line is not available you can access the website by clicking on the following link: www.sloughfamilyservices.org.uk.

If the child or young person requires immediate protection please call the Front Door Hub on 01753 875362 and send the electronic multi-agency referral form (MARF) to sloughchildren.referrals@scstrust.co.uk

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.