Education: Coronavirus

Department for Education written question – answered on 31st March 2020.

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Photo of Steve Reed Steve Reed Shadow Minister (Education) (Children and Families)

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, with reference to his Department's announcement on 18 March 2020 that schools, colleges and early years settings should close, whether (a) after school and (b) holiday clubs are included in that closure; and whether he has plans to allocate financial support to those organisations during the covid-19 outbreak.

Photo of Vicky Ford Vicky Ford The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Education

We have asked parents to keep their children at home, wherever possible, and for childcare providers, schools and colleges to remain closed, except for those children who absolutely need to attend. Guidance covers Ofsted-registered childcare providers for children of all ages, including childminders, nurseries and wraparound childcare and clubs. This includes before- and after-school and holiday care. Further details of the guidance is available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-for-schools-and-other-educational-settings.

On 23 March 2020, the government also provided further guidance directing youth centres and community centres to close. More information can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/further-businesses-and-premises-to-close/further-businesses-and-premises-to-close-guidance.

Regarding financial support, the Chancellor of the Exchequer has announced a package of support for businesses. This includes business rates and Statutory Sick Pay relief, and a range of loans and grants. Furthermore, under the government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, all UK employers will be able to access support to continue paying part of their employees’ salary for those employees that would otherwise have been laid off during this crisis. HM Revenue & Customs will reimburse 80% of furloughed workers’ wage costs, up to a cap of £2,500 per month.

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