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COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Update 22nd May 2020: Safe Working in Education and Childcare Settings - Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and Parent/Carer Letter from the Local Authority

Dear Colleagues,                                                                               

To keep you all up-to-date with the latest information on Coronavirus (COVID-19), and help protect yourself and others, we will be issuing regular updates.

The dedicated COVID-19 information area on the HES portal contains all communications and updates from the Local Authority and central government relating to COVID-19. All early years providers and schools can access this area by using the following link: http://hes.org.uk/Page/17045.

Safe Working in Education and Childcare Settings - Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
As previously communicated, the DfE guidance is clear that PPE is only needed in a very small number of cases:

  • Children, young people and students whose care routinely already involves the use of PPE due to their intimate care needs should continue to receive their care in the same way
  • If a child, young person or other learner becomes unwell with symptoms of coronavirus while in their setting and needs direct personal care until they can return home. A fluid-resistant surgical facemask should be worn by the supervising adult if a distance of 2 metres cannot be maintained. If contact with the child or young person is necessary, then disposable gloves, a disposable apron and a fluid-resistant surgical facemask should be worn by the supervising adult. If a risk assessment determines that there is a risk of splashing to the eyes, for example from coughing, spitting, or vomiting, then eye protection should also be worn

 

The guidance is also clear that education, childcare settings, and providers should use their local supply chains to obtain PPE.  Where this is not possible, and there is an unmet urgent need for PPE in order to operate safely, they may approach their nearest local resilience forum.

To support schools and early years providers, the Local Authority is developing a process to centralise the procurement of essential PPE for Havering based educational settings.  However, due to the complexities of this process, it is unlikely that the arrangements will be finalised until next week, which we recognise will leave schools very little time to ensure PPE is in place before any re-opening from 1st June.  Therefore, we would recommend that if you haven’t already, you should investigate sourcing sufficient PPE from the existing suppliers to enable your school to open safely. It is recognised that the supply of PPE is essential before any school can re-open, and we hope that once finalised, any centralised process will then be able to fulfil on-going PPE requirements.

Parent/Carer Letter from the Local Authority
Please find attached a letter from Robert Benham, Deputy Leader of the Council and Cabinet Member for Education, Children & Families. The letter will be promoted using the Council’s corporate communications channels, but could you please arrange for this to also be made available to your school community. 

Thanks, Trevor


22 May 2020

Author
Trevor Cook
Customer Services
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