Publication - Advice and guidance

Coronavirus (COVID-19): school age childcare services guidance

Non-statutory guidance to support a safe and supportive environment.

Coronavirus (COVID-19): school age childcare services guidance
Summary of changes

Summary of changes



Summary of changes



First version of document



Update to guidance on face coverings in Key Public Health Measures section and Dedicated School Transport section.


Updates effective from 31st August 2020.



Various updates for clarification of key issues, including self-isolation, testing procedures, quarantine, outbreak and case management.


The revised and additional text introduced in this version of the guidance is highlighted in yellow.



Shifting the emphasis of the guidance from “reopening childcare” to “protective measures in services”.


Further changes resulting from feedback on the experience of implementing the guidance at local level.


Key changes include updated guidance on:


  • Specific discussion of the strategic framework and the approach that should be taken by the sector;
  • Updated approaches to ventilation and temperature control as we head into autumn/winter;
  • Updated text on shielding, support for specific groups, test and protect and outbreak management, to align with public health advice and approaches across education; 
  • Use of face coverings in settings, following updated advice from the sub group;
  • Guidance on singing, following updated advice from the sub group;
  • Peripatetic staffing and movement of staff between settings, following updated advice from the sub group;
  • Alignment of group sizes with primary class sizes.




Two small but significant updates:


  • The period of self-isolation for close contacts of confirmed cases has been changed from 14 days to 10 days;
  • The period of self-isolation for individuals arriving from non-exempt countries has been changed from 14 days to 10 days.



Minor updates, most notably:

  • Update on new SARS-CoV-2 variant
  • The addition of a section on home working, since this may apply to School Age Childcare staff working in administrative roles.
  • Revised advice for those who are shielding and clinically at risk. We are strongly recommending that people on the shielding list do NOT go to work if they cannot work from home.
  • Revised wording on restrictions relating to travelling to and from Scotland.



Important  updates (listed in detail on P5) but including:

  • Inclusion of paragraph explaining that this document incorporates sections from school guidance as well as elements of ELC guidance.
  • New introduction.
  • Changes in language around wearing facemasks to align with schools guidance.
  • New section on the introduction of routine asymptomatic testing for school age childcare staff.
  • Further guidance on risk assessments and a requirement that these be reviewed regularly and in the context of the re-opening of ELC to all children.


First published: 5 Mar 2021 Last updated: 11 Oct 2021 -