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15th May 2020
Dear Parents and Carers
I hope this finds you safe and well. We have been open throughout the lockdown and have greatly missed all the children who have not been in; we long to see them again.
As you will know, the government has asked nurseries to start welcoming back more children from the
1st June. This will only happen if they are satisfied that rates of infection are decreasing, but at the moment we are assuming this will be the case.
On Monday evening this week, the Department for Education released a guidance document for all education settings and the steps they need to take before welcoming back more children.
They also produced this information for parents:
I know this is a time of continued high anxiety and uncertainty and we want to support families to get back to work, but the initial guidelines require significant changes to be made to limit the number of contacts and prevent groups of children mixing with others. Unlike schools where classes are separate and children attend every day, we have a very varied pattern of attendance over the week, developed to meet the needs of individual families, and this poses complex logistical challenges.
The government have said they will release further guidance in the ‘coming days and weeks’ and I will contact you again when we have this information.
In the meantime, I am working with Trustees and the Local Authority to put plans into place. However, it is important to stress that with the guidelines we have at the moment we are not going to be able to welcome all children back on 1st June, we will have to adopt a phased return.
At this stage therefore we are asking parents who are keyworkers to contact us by email please at: firstname.lastname@example.org by Monday 18th May to let us know any sessions you will need from 1st June.
If we are not able to accommodate all children initially, we have been asked to prioritise 3 and 4 year olds, so once we know the requirements of keyworker families, I will contact you again.
I assure you that the safety of children and staff is at the forefront of our planning and am grateful for your patience whilst we grapple to find a manageable solution to enable us to support all our families.
We continue to keep you and your children in our thoughts and look forward with hope to a time when we can all be back together.
30th March 2020
Dear Parents and Carers
Re: Response to COVID-19 pandemic
We are being asked to continue to provide care for a limited number of children – those who are vulnerable and children whose parents are critical to the Covid-19 response and cannot be safely cared for at home.
The local authority is monitoring the use of these places and asking us to ensure that we provide places only for children where both parents have been identified by their employer as critical to the response to the COVID-19 crisis, and only for the time that they are actively working in that role.
The key message is that wherever possible children should be cared for at home
Payment of fees:
We will not be charging fees, or a retainer, for children not attending. Any balance on your account for sessions not taken in March due to the response to the COVID-19 crisis will be credited to your account. We will keep places open for children registered, unless you give notice to withdraw their place. When we re-open we will give priority for places to children who are registered.
Invoices for April will be created at the end of the month for sessions used.
We intend to continue to support you and your family during this time of great uncertainty and increased anxiety.
With best wishes from us all that your family will stay safe and well.
Thursday 19th March 2020
To all our families
We were devastated to hear the news that nurseries are being asked to close. We hoped to be able to continue to support you through these very challenging times.
I have received confirmation this evening that emergency legislation was passed today giving the Government powers to close nurseries as well as schools from Monday 23rd March unless providing care for children of keyworkers or vulnerable children.
We are awaiting clarification from the government as to exactly which occupations fall into the keyworker category.
I know this decision will have a huge impact on families and am also concerned for the wellbeing of our very dedicated staff team.
I will provide a further update when it is available.
You are all in my thoughts tonight.
Head of Centre
17th March 2020
As you will be aware, the situation regarding coronavirus (COVID-19) is changing daily. One of the most difficult aspects is the continued uncertainty about measures being taken to limit the spread of the virus.
We are receiving advice from Public Health England and the current guidance continues to be that we can help to stop the spread of the virus by practising good respiratory and hand hygiene:
In addition, we have been advised that anyone becoming unwell with a new, continuous cough or a high temperature should stay at home to avoid spreading infection to others and that all members of the same household should then also stay at home for 14 days.
As we all know, young children frequently develop colds, coughs and high temperatures and this will be a difficult period to manage. Your co-operation with this guidance will help to protect the most vulnerable members of our community.
If your child has a temperature or a recent persistent cough, please keep them at home for 7 days, and keep us informed.
The situation is developing rapidly, and we are following all guidance from Public Health England, including increased cleaning regimes. We will keep you updated on any developments.
Thank you for your co-operation, we hope that our collective response to this epidemic will have a positive impact.
Head of Centre
Willow Childcare Centre