The new term starts for pupils on the 8th September 2021

Coronavirus Information 3rd November 2020

This is your daily email to keep you updated on the government’s response to coronavirus (COVID-19).

Guidance on what the new national restrictions mean for education and childcare settings

Following the Prime Minister’s announcement on 31 October, new national restrictions will come into force on Thursday 5 November. We will be publishing information on what these new national restrictions mean for education and childcare settings.

This guidance will provide sector specific information and will cover the latest advice for clinically extremely vulnerable children, young people and staff, advice on the use of face coverings in education settings and educational trips.

Provision of food in schools during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak

School kitchens should remain open and the normal legal requirements apply regarding the provision of food to all pupils who want it. If children who are eligible for benefits-related free school meals are required to stay at home due to coronavirus (COVID-19), they should be offered meals or food parcels which meet the school food standards.

These could be offered on a daily or weekly basis and be collected or delivered to the child’s home. All meals should be distributed in line with guidance on social distancing.

Further information on providing good quality food parcels is available in the guidance on providing school meals during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) home test kit webinars for schools and colleges

The Department of Health and Social Care is hosting a series of webinars to support schools and colleges in understanding how to use coronavirus (COVID-19) home test kits in education settings. These webinars will provide guidance on who should receive the kits, what they look like and how parents and carers should use them.

Each webinar will last for 60 minutes and there will be an opportunity to ask questions. We strongly encourage schools and colleges that have not yet attended a webinar to sign up.

The webinars are being run on the following dates:

  • Wednesday 4 November at 3pm
  • Friday 13 November at 3pm

Full details on when the test kits should be provided, how to store them and the usual routes for accessing free coronavirus (COVID-19) testing can be found in our guidance on coronavirus (COVID-19) home testing kits

The information below hasn’t changed since our last update

Department for Education coronavirus (COVID-19) helpline – opening hours

The Department for Education coronavirus (COVID-19) helpline is available to answer questions about coronavirus (COVID-19) relating to education settings and children’s social care.

Please listen carefully to all of the available options before selecting the most appropriate option for your nursery, school, college or university.

Please select option 1 or 2 if you require specific advice on the action to take to respond to a positive case of coronavirus (COVID-19) in your setting. This option will take you through to a dedicated team of NHS Business Services Authority advisors who will work through a risk assessment with you to identify close contacts and will inform you what action is needed based on the latest public health advice.

Please select option 3 or 4 for any other questions about coronavirus (COVID-19) relating to education settings and children’s social care.

Phone: 0800 046 8687
Opening hours: Monday to Friday from 8am to 6pm
Saturday and Sunday from 10am to 6pm

Look up your unique organisation number (UON)

If you have not received your unique organisation number (UON) for ordering new coronavirus (COVID-19) test kits you can can look it up using your unique reference number (URN) or your UK provider reference number (UKPRN) or by calling the Test and Trace helpdesk on 119

Department for Education guidance

Our guidance to support education providers, local authorities and parents during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak can be accessed using the links below: