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Publication - Advice and guidance

Coronavirus (COVID-19): early learning and childcare (ELC) services

Non-statutory guidance to support the continued safe operation of ELC settings.

Contents
Coronavirus (COVID-19): early learning and childcare (ELC) services
Visitors to the setting

Visitors to the setting

Visits to the setting should be avoided unless necessary, and this should be with permission of the manager, head teacher or local authority. This includes adult visitors to the setting e.g. contractors, deliveries etc. Adult visitors to settings should be strictly limited only to those that are necessary to support children or the construction, maintenance and running of the setting and arrangements should be communicated clearly to staff and the wider ELC community. Other authorised visitors will include the Care Inspectorate who have a legal duty to undertake scrutiny work.

Telephone calls, online meetings and ‘virtual’ visits should be the norm for regular and other meetings with specialists and parents. However, where it may be in the best interests of children for a specialist or parent or carer to attend in person, this should be considered on a case by case basis, for example in relation to child protection issues, addressing additional support needs or where a parent has a disability which affects communication over the telephone or online.  

For necessary visitors, when face to face communication is essential, this should be reflected in risk assessments and risk mitigations and physical distancing guidance should be adhered to. Consider whether essential face to face communication could take place outdoors. If it takes place indoors, ensure that the 2m physical distancing requirements can be strictly adhered to, the meeting space is well ventilated, face coverings are worn and that there is a supply of antibacterial hand gel available to visitors at the entrance to the setting.

Additional arrangements for sharing information between staff and families should be agreed to ensure that clear lines of communication are available where face to face contact is being reduced, for example this might include (where appropriate) video messaging, phone calls or text messages, photographs or email. When settings communicate using these additional measures they must also consider the General Data Protection regulations (GDPR), and update their existing privacy policies where necessary. 


First published: 5 Mar 2021 Last updated: 9 Apr 2021 -