Guidance

Actions for early years and childcare providers during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak

What childcare services early years settings, childminders and local authorities need to provide during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

Documents

Details

This guidance is for providers registered with Ofsted and childminders registered with childminder agencies for children of all ages, including:

  • nurseries and wraparound childcare
  • before and after school clubs
  • holiday clubs

This guidance does not cover nannies or au pairs.

We will update this guidance as further information becomes available.

DfE coronavirus helpline

If you have a query about coronavirus (COVID-19) relating to schools and other educational establishments, and children's social care, in England contact our helpline.

Lines are open from 8am to 6pm, Monday to Friday, and 10am to 4pm at weekends.

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

Published 24 March 2020
Last updated 2 July 2020 + show all updates
  1. Updated to set out a change to the protective measures in early years settings that will be effective from 20 July, removing the requirement to keep children in small consistent groups within settings (sections 2.1 and 3.3). Added new content on risk assessment (3.1), supporting staff with increased risk factors (3.2) and system of controls (3.3). Updated content on attendance at settings for those shielding, with changes to the advice effective from 1 August, and removal of content on vulnerable children since settings are open for all children (section 4). Updated content on wraparound care (5.3). Updated Early Years Foundation Stage reforms (7.6) and Reception Baseline Assessment (7.7).

  2. Updated to reflect that early years providers are now able to open for all children and to provide additional information on protective measures.

  3. We have added a clarification on the requirement for providers to carry the appropriate insurance (for example, public liability insurance) to cover all premises from which they provide childcare or childminding.

  4. Guidance updated to include a restructure of the document in line with wider opening, updated content on funding including in relation to the Competition and Markets Authority and insurance, updated content on infection prevention and control, a new section on attendance, new information on the use of community centres and before and after school clubs, a new section of safeguarding and welfare including provisions for children with SEND and a clarification on paediatric first aid certificates.

  5. Updated guidance including adding a new section clarifying the position on welcoming back all children to early years settings from 1 June, information on when childminders can reopen to more children, and what provision they can currently provide, information on testing for essential workers, and information for parents on temporary changes to the 30 hours free early education entitlements.

  6. Update to reflect changes in Early Years Statutory Framework.

  7. Updated guidance on the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS).

  8. Updated introductory sections and sections on Who this guidance is for, Prioritising children, Funding, Staying open for children of critical workers and vulnerable children, Early Years Foundation Stage and Holidays.

  9. Updated to clarify the income support available and the requirements for providing safe, quality care for vulnerable and critical workers’ children.

  10. First published.