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Attending school during lockdown

Published Friday, 8 January 2021

The Government has published details about children who can continue to attend school during the current lockdown.

A list of which job roles are defined as ‘critical workers’ for parents of school children, and those children who are defined as vulnerable, has been published by the Department for Education.

A number of different arrangement have been put in place so schools can provide IT equipment and internet access for children learning at home.

Children of critical workers can attend school during lockdown, along with vulnerable children, and children with Education and Health Care Plans.

Parents in York who are critical workers should contact their school to make arrangements for their children, should their children need to be in school full time.

Cllr Keith Orrell, Executive Member for Children, Young People and Education, said:

We want to support the citywide and nationwide effort to bring infection rates down and the national guidance is to limit contacts between households as much as possible.

“We are working with York Schools and Academies Board to provide education on site and online for all children in the city, especially for the more vulnerable pupils.  However, with the alarming increase in the number of confirmed cases in the city, we must continue to be cautious and follow the national guidance where possible.

“We appreciate that this is a difficult time for families and that this is a complex situation that schools are managing.  With the recent change in national guidance and amount of working taking place, schools will respond to parents/carers as soon as they are able.”

Meanwhile the Government has put in place arrangements to provide children who need them with devices and internet access at home. This will be managed directly with schools.

All schools will provide information about their remote learning provision with families and there will be details on their websites by 25 January.

Useful resources for parents to support home learning can be found on the council website.

The guidance on children of critical workers and vulnerable children who can access schools or educational settings can be found on the gov.uk website.

Government guidance is that schools should speak to parents and carers to identify who needs to go to school. If it proves necessary, schools can ask for simple evidence that a parent is a critical worker, such as their work ID badge or pay slip. Parents and carers who are critical workers should keep their children at home if they can.

Children who are receiving support from social workers and those who have an Education and Health Care plan should all attend school during lockdown.