Following the numerous updates to the Protective measures guidance for breakfast, after-school and holiday clubs, we have summarised the key points from the latest guidance below. Please note this is guidance for England only.
Removal of Restrictions from 19th July 2021
Summer Holiday Provision in England (from 19th July 2021)
From 19th July 2021, out of school clubs will be able to offer their provision without restriction.
In summary, the guidance for operation from 19th July is as follows:
- There will be no requirement to operate in small, consistent groups (or bubbles) from 19th July throughout the summer or from the new Autumn term.
- Staffing requirements will be in line with normal operating standards.
- Settings are no longer advised to limit the attendance of parents and carers at sessions.
- Maintaining good hand and respiratory hygiene together with regular cleaning protocols remains a priority.
- Appropriate cleaning schedules using standard products are recommended a minimum of twice daily and should focus on frequently touched areas.
- Ventilation continues to be important, but the guidance now balances the need for ventilation with a comfortable temperature for children and staff.
- Your risk assessment should cover what to do if a child or staff member develops symptoms whilst at your setting and the arrangements in place to monitor whether the infection control measures you have in place are working as planned
- You should have an Outbreak Management Plan in place which details what action is likely to be taken if there is an outbreak of Covid-19 locally. For more information on Outbreak Management Plans, please see below
Tracing Close Contacts
Where a child or adults develops symptoms of Covid-19, they should continue to follow public health advice and not attend your setting. The household (including any siblings) should continue to follow the Public Health England stay at home: guidance for households with possible or confirmed coronavirus (COVID-19) infection.
- NHS Test and Trace will undertake all contact tracing activity from 19th July 2021.
- Out of School Settings will not be required to trace close contacts as these will be identified by NHS Test and Trace in collaboration with the positive case.
- You will only be contacted in exceptional cases to help identify close contacts.
Changes to Self-Isolation for Children
- From 16th August 2021, children under age of 18 years will no longer be required to isolate if they are contacted by NHS Test and Trace as a cose contact of a positive Covid-19 case.
- Instead, they will be encouraged to take a PCR test.
- Un-vaccinated adults (those aged over 18 years and 4 months) will need to self-isolate if identified as a close contact.
- Over the summer, adults and secondary age pupils should continue to test regularly using LFD Testing if they are regularly attending childcare settings
- For primary aged pupils there is no need to test over the summer period.
- A positive LFD Test will continue to trigger a PCR test and the individual should continue to isolate until test result is returned.
- If the PCR test is negative and has been taken within 48 hours of the LFD Test, the negative test result overrides the LFD Test result and the child can return to your setting as long as they do not have Covid-19 symptoms
Outbreak Management Plan
- Settings should develop an Outbreak Management Plan. This is a plan for an outbreak or spike in infections locally and defines what you would do if there is an outbreak of Covid-19.
- An outbreak is defined as “several confirmed cases within 14 days” and should this occur, you may have an outbreak but this will be determined by Local Public Health Authorities
- Should you have a confirmed case of Covid-19, you should continue to report and seek advice from DfE who will escalate and advise. You do this via 0800 046 8687 and selecting option 1 for advice on the action to take in response to a positive case.
Your Outbreak Management Plan should explain how you will:
- Promote and engage with test and trace
- Manage and report confirmed cases
- Contain any outbreak by following local advice and reintroduce control measures as advised by local public health department. (For example these might include use of face coverings for adults or reintroducing small groups to prevent mixing)
- You will be advised by Public Health England and DfE whether you should reintroduce bubbles in response to an outbreak situation.
- These will only be considered as a last resort given the importance of attending childcare for children and families.