Coronavirus Information 11th May 2020

11th May 2020

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

Phased opening of early years settings and schools to more pupils from 1 June

Yesterday, the Prime Minister addressed the nation on coronavirus. The Prime Minister announced that from 1 June at the earliest, primary pupils may be able to begin going back into school in stages, beginning with Reception, year 1 and year 6. Our ambition is that secondary pupils facing exams next year will get some time with their teachers before the summer holidays. We will also ask childcare settings to prepare to open for more children from 1 June.

We will publish further guidance setting out more information for early years, schools and colleges later today. We will send a second email update once they are available on GOV.​UK.

The transcript and recording of the Prime Minister’s address to the nation can be found here:

Updated guidance on early years initial teacher training (ITT) requirements

We have updated our guidance for providers that offer early years ITT to reflect the measures to be taken during the coronavirus outbreak.

The guidance can be found here:

Updated guidance on the actions for further education colleges and providers during the coronavirus outbreak

We have updated our guidance on the actions for further education colleges and providers during the coronavirus outbreak. This update includes new sections on high needs funding for students with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) and traineeship flexibilities, updates on functional skills flexibility in apprenticeships and the acceptance of confirmation emails for qualification achievement from awarding organisations.

The guidance can be found here:

Updated guidance on conducting a special educational needs and disability (SEND) risk assessment during the coronavirus outbreak

We have updated our guidance for settings managing children and young people with complex special educational needs and disabilities during the coronavirus outbreak. The guidance has been updated to reflect the SEND regulation changes, new information on how the guidance affects children and young people with an education, health and care (EHC) plan and a social worker, new information on how to keep staff and pupils safe and reducing the risk of infection in educational settings.

The guidance can be found here:


The information below has not changed since yesterday.


Department for Education coronavirus helpline

The Department for Education coronavirus helpline is available to answer questions about COVID-19 relating to education and children’s social care. Staff, parents and young people can contact this helpline as follows:

Phone: 0800 046 8687

Opening hours:

8am to 6pm – Monday to Friday
10am to 4pm – Saturday and Sunday

If you work in a school, please have your unique reference number (URN or UK PRN) available when calling the helpline.

Handwashing advice

It is essential that everyone washes their hands more often, using soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Hand washing with soap employs mechanical action that loosens bacteria and viruses from the skin, rinsing them into the drain. Drying hands afterwards makes the skin less hospitable to the virus. Hand sanitiser can be effective if soap is not available or the situation makes using soap less feasible (i.e. when outside) but using hand sanitiser provides none of the virus-destroying friction that rubbing your hands together and rinsing with water provides.

The latest guidance and video on hand washing can be found at:

The e-Bug project is led by Public Health England and has a dedicated webpage for learning resources on hand washing and respiratory hygiene.

Resources are currently available for KS1, KS2 and KS3 and can be used in various settings including schools and at home:

Collection of guidance for educational settings on GOV.​UK

All of the Department for Education’s coronavirus guidance for educational settings can now be found in one place on GOV.​UK at:

Our main schools guidance, the ‘actions for schools during the coronavirus outbreak’ will be regularly kept up to date. Any new advice for schools on specific issues, such as food, exams or safeguarding, will be linked from: