Emergency provision in schools update

23/03/2020
Geoff Barton, General Secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, comments on the first day of emergency provision in schools during the coronavirus crisis
 
Regarding the first day of emergency provision in schools during the coronavirus crisis, Geoff Barton, General Secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, said:

“Initial feedback indicates that parents have heeded calls to use the emergency provision in schools only in the event that they are key workers who have no option available to keep their children at home. Schools are reporting that the number of pupils arriving is manageable. We are grateful to parents for their understanding.

“We would like to pay tribute to schools for their amazing work in organising this provision so quickly. They have calmly gone about the business of identifying children who need places, arranging staffing cover, and providing learning resources for children who are at home. It has been an exemplary exercise in superb leadership.

“Our biggest concern is the health and wellbeing of staff and pupils who are attending schools. Schools are actively managing this situation by ensuring social distancing, reinforcing messages about washing hands regularly, and ensuring that areas which are being used are regularly cleaned.

“We are in a continuing dialogue with the Department for Education and will be talking to officials about what more can be done to protect staff and children.”