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Key Worker Clarification 20/03/2020

Dear Parent/Carers

Key Worker Criteria and Guidelines

In documentation released by the government late last night, clear scientific advice was outlined on how to further limit the spread of COVID-19.

If children can stay safely at home, they should, to limit the chance of the virus spreading.

That is why the government has asked parents to keep their children at home, wherever possible, and asked schools to remain open only for only those children who absolutely need to attend.

The provision that schools will provide will be very different from normal. For these small number of pupils, it will be about care, not education.

Schools are, therefore, 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.

Please, therefore, follow these key principles outlined by the government:

  1. If it is at all possible for children to be at home, then they should be.
  2. If a child needs specialist support, is vulnerable or has a parent who is a critical worker, then provision will be available for them.
  3. Parents should not rely for childcare upon those who are advised to be in the stringent social distancing category such as grandparents, friends, or family members with underlying conditions.
  4. Parents should also do everything they can to ensure children are not mixing socially in a way which can continue to spread the virus. They should observe the same social distancing principles as adults.

If your work is critical to the COVID-19 response, or you work in one of the critical sectors listed below, and you cannot keep your child safe at home, then your children will be prioritised for education provision:

  • Health and social care - doctors, nurses, midwives, paramedics, social workers, care workers
  • Education and childcare - nursery and teaching staff, social workers and those specialist education professionals who must remain active during the COVID-19 response
  • Key public services - justice system, religious staff, charities and workers delivering key frontline services
  • Local and national government - this only includes those administrative occupations essential to the effective delivery of the COVID-19 response
  • Food and other necessary goods - this includes those involved in food production, processing, distribution, sale and delivery
  • Public safety and national security - police, Ministry of Defence civilians, armed forces personnel (those critical to the delivery of key defence and national security outputs and essential to the response to the COVID-19 pandemic), fire and rescue service employees (including support staff), National Crime Agency staff, those maintaining border security, prison and probation staff and other national security roles, including those overseas.
  • Transport - those who will keep the air, water, road and rail passenger and freight transport modes operating during the COVID-19 response
  • Utilities, communication and financial services - this includes staff needed for essential financial services provision, the oil, gas, electricity and water sectors, information technology and data infrastructure sector and primary industry supplies to continue during the COVID-19 response, as well as key staff working in the civil nuclear, chemicals, telecommunications, postal services and delivery, payments providers and waste disposal sectors.

If after reading the information above you still identify yourself as a key worker and are unable to provide provision for your children to be safely cared for at home, for example you are a single parent whose work is critical to the COVID-19 response, please complete the key worker form sent via ParentMail that you will receive shortly. Only responses received today will be considered. If you do not respond/contact us today, we will therefore assume that your child/children will be cared for at home. We will then ring you, at some point today, to discuss your individual case.

I must stress to you that, if you unnecessarily identify yourself as a key worker, for example if there is another responsible adult at home who can care for your child, you are not only putting your child’s life at risk by allowing them to continue to socially mix, but you are also putting at risk the lives of my staff. Therefore, I urge you to only identify yourself as a key worker if your work is critical to the COVID-19 response and your child/children cannot be safely cared for at home.

 

Please remember, the school setting is the final option for care, not the first.

 

Each and every one of my staff cares deeply about your children and will always do anything I ask of them in order to keep your children safe. I now ask you to show the same level of care for my staff and help me to keep them safe.

 

At this time we find ourselves in the midst of a National crisis and the government is asking the nation to take drastic action in order to reduce the spread of the virus. The Coronavirus is a worldwide pandemic and we must take is seriously and keep social mixing to an absolute minimum.

 

Yours sincerely

 

Mrs Mole

 

Mrs Mole

Headteacher

John Hunt Primary School

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