Education

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Education

Nursery and school places for children of key workers

If you feel your child is eligible for a nursery or school place because you are a key worker, but have been denied, please contact us.

For nursery and childcare settings:
Email – kentcfis@theeducationpeople.org
Call: 03000 41 23 23

For school settings:
Email: emergencyschoolplaces@kent.gov.uk
Call: 03000 41 21 21

Read the latest update about early years and childcare settings reopening.

Schools

More than 250 primary schools in Kent were open to additional pupils between 1 and 5 June, and we expect this number to increase as more schools are able to put additional safety measures in place. We anticipate that very soon the great majority of Kent’s primary schools will be open to all or some of Years R, 1 and 6, as well as to nursery children for those that have a nursery onsite.

We have worked closely with head teachers to support them in their preparations for this further opening, and we will continue to offer support going forward. Ensuring our pupils and staff can learn and work in a safe environment remains our overriding priority and we are also working closely with Public Health England (PHE) to ensure that any suspected cases of COVID-19 within a school are managed effectively to minimise the spread of the virus. PHE will offer advice to any school that needs it on self isolation, infection control measures and cleaning, while schools will be making sure pupils wash their hands often and staff will be cleaning frequently touched surfaces regularly and minimising contact with other people as far as possible.

These are unprecedented times and we would like to thank school staff and colleagues for their hard work and dedication in ensuring schools are ready to safely welcome back additional pupils.

For answers to common questions about how coronavirus is affecting schools, check the education section of our your questions answered page.

Special educational needs and disability (SEND), Kent’s local offer

We will continue to work on both our SEND improvement programme and our work to support families. We have moved most of our staff out of office locations and are planning for significant staff absence over the coming weeks meaning we will increasingly focus on high priority work with those families most in need of support.

If you or your family receive services, as far as possible, we intend to continue to deliver services where they are needed. We have advised those staff who are able to, to work from home, but to continue to stay in contact with yourselves. This means that whilst our offices will continue to remain open at the moment, they will be running on skeleton teams.

If you have any concerns for either yourself or your family, please do contact your worker directly or their manager if they are not available.

For more information and for details of the temporary new law about Early GElp Care Plans and Assessments, please read our guidance for families during the COVID-19 outbreak.

Education, health and care (EHC) needs assessment requests

We want to ensure that, as far as is possible, our services to children, young people and their families are maintained. However, postal services and our internal processing of mail is severely impacted. Our SEN officers are able to work remotely so we hope to continue with our work without too much disruption

If you would like to request an assessment of your child’s education, health and care needs, please could you could send a short email to let us know that you wish to make a request and provide your contact details. We will then get back to you with information about next steps and to arrange how you can share any information about your child with us.

If you’re unable to contact us by email, we would be happy to receive a request over the phone during this period.

For our contact details please visit the SEND team page.

Chaperone licence DBS checks

Unfortunately, the service for the ID checks for a DBS is now on hold until further notice due to current government advice. This will be reviewed regularly.

You are still able to continue with your chaperone application but there will be a delay in your licence being issued due to the DBS checks being on hold. If you chose to continue with the application, we will be able to inform you once this service has been resumed.

Children in entertainment licences

Due to the government’s new rules on staying at home and away from others, we have suspended the issuing of performance licences, Body of Persons Approvals and work permits until further notice. This will be regularly reviewed, and arrangements adjusted accordingly as and when the guidance changes.

If you need to contact us for any queries regarding this, please call 03000 420883 or email childemploymentandentertainment@kent.gov.uk.

Free school meals

Children eligible for free school meals will benefit from a national voucher scheme allowing them to continue to access meals whilst they stay at home.

Schools can now provide every eligible child with a weekly shopping voucher worth £15 to spend at supermarkets while schools are closed due to coronavirus.

Find out more by visiting the national government website.

Kent Test

We understand that many of you with children in year 5 are very anxious to know what will happen about the Kent Test when the new school year starts in September. Read our Kent Test update.

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