Extended Services: Coronavirus

Department for Education written question – answered on 16th October 2020.

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Photo of Tan Dhesi Tan Dhesi Shadow Minister (Transport)

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what recent assessment he has made of the effect of covid-19 on wraparound care providers.

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

The department does not hold a central register of all wraparound provision and so does not routinely collect data on providers.

However, our Regional Education and Children’s Teams, comprising education and social care staff from both the department and Ofsted, are working closely with local authorities, and will act as a valuable source of intelligence on the sufficiency of wraparound childcare places in local areas. In addition, we have been in close communication with various stakeholders, including several wraparound providers since the start of the COVID-19 outbreak and we will continue this communication over the coming months.

We have ensured that, as of 4 July, wraparound care providers and other providers of out-of-school activities to children have been able to open, both on or away from school premises, with protective measures in place. We have published further updated guidance for providers who run before and after-school clubs, tuition and other out-of-school settings for children on the protective measures that should be put in place to ensure they are operating as safely as possible. This is to also ensure that with the introduction of our new local COVID-19 alert levels, that wraparound childcare is able to remain open to support parents, and in particular critical workers, to continue to work. The guidance is available here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/protective-measures-for-holiday-or-after-school-clubs-and-other-out-of-school-settings-for-children-during-the-coronavirus-covid-19-outbreak/protective-measures-for-out-of-school-settings-during-the-coronavirus-covid-19-outbreak.

We also know that many schools operate their own breakfast and after school clubs, and they should be working to resume this provision, if they have not already. As part of our guidance to schools on full opening, we have provided schools with guidance to support them in reopening this valuable provision. The guidance is available here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/actions-for-schools-during-the-coronavirus-outbreak/guidance-for-full-opening-schools#wraparound-provision-and-extra-curricular-activity.

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