Teachers: Coronavirus

Department for Education written question – answered at on 4 June 2020.

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Photo of Feryal Clark Feryal Clark Labour, Enfield North

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what guidance the Government has provided for teachers returning to work who live with (a) partners and (b) children with (i) asthma, (ii) chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or (iii) another health concern categorised as at risk from covid-19.

Photo of Nick Gibb Nick Gibb Minister of State (Education)

Guidance on GOV.UK on implementing protective measures in schools and nurseries provides advice to staff and pupils who are shielding or clinically vulnerable, or are living with a shielded or clinically vulnerable person: That guidance can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-implementing-protective-measures-in-education-and-childcare-settings/coronavirus-covid-19-implementing-protective-measures-in-education-and-childcare-settings.

Clinically vulnerable people are those considered to be at a higher risk of severe illness from COVID-19. This includes anyone who has asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).

Clinically vulnerable people have been advised to take extra care in observing social distancing and should work from home where possible. Schools should endeavour to support this, for example by asking staff to support remote education, carry out lesson planning or other roles which can be done from home. If clinically vulnerable individuals cannot work from home, they should be offered the safest available on-site roles, staying 2 metres away from others wherever possible.

If a member of staff lives with someone who is clinically vulnerable (but not clinically extremely vulnerable) they can attend their school or nursery.

Some people have been informed that they are clinically extremely vulnerable and have been advised to follow shielding guidance. They should therefore not attend work. Some people with severe COPD or severe asthma may have been classed as clinically extremely vulnerable, and will have received a letter informing them of this.

If a member of staff member lives in a household with someone who is extremely clinically vulnerable, it is advised they only attend work if stringent 2m distancing can be adhered to. If it cannot be adhered to, we do not expect those individuals to attend and they should be supported to work at home.

Detailed guidance on shielding and protecting people who are clinically extremely vulnerable from COVID-19 is available on GOV.UK: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-on-shielding-and-protecting-extremely-vulnerable-persons-from-covid-19/guidance-on-shielding-and-protecting-extremely-vulnerable-persons-from-covid-19#work-and-employment-for-those-who-are-shielding.

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