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Coronavirus Update


During the Coronavirus outbreak, the situation will be changing rapidly both nationally and locally.


We will use this page to hold all the latest guidance and advice for settings.

FIS Regular Updates

07.02.22 FIS Update

Annual Childcare Audit and Census, Early Years and Childcare Workforce Strategy meeting, Early Years Inclusion Fund Applications, Disability Access Fund (DAF) Application, SENCo Network Training, Nasen Training, The Anna Freud Centre for Children and Families, Forest School Network Update, Forest School – Forest Kindergarten, Pacey Careers in Childcare Recruitment, Contact Information

31.01.22 FIS Update

Early Years Inclusion Fund, Disability Living Allowance, SENCO Network, Brightsparks, Covid Case Reporting, Tiny Happy People, Storytelling in Early Years, Reading Research, Annual Childcare Audit, Childcare Brokerages,Contact Information

24.01.22 FIS Update

Staffing concerns, Updated Covid Guidance, Safeguarding Children: Working Together A 2021/22, Annual Childcare Audit and Census, Education Endowment Foundation Survey, Child in Care Practitioner Network Training, Childcare Brokerages, Current Vacancies, Contact Information

17.01.22 FIS Update

Annual Childcare Audit and Census – reminder to complete, Ofsted withdraws and clarifies guidance on significant events and health changes, Self-isolation in England to be cut to five full days, government confirms, Safeguarding information, Childcare brokerages x 4, New Early Start course delivered by Family Learning - correction, Forest School update, Providers and COVID weekly pulse survey: COVID absences, Contact Information

Quality Improvement Team Information


Keeping in touch with Families

The Coronavirus crisis has created significant challenges for Early Years providers with the sudden closure of some settings having an impact on children, families and practitioners alike. During the current climate it is imperative to keep in touch with families; those that are staying at home and those that may be self -isolating. Early years practitioners have a special relationship with the children in their care. This is particularly true for key persons and the children they are assigned to.

A few suggestions to help you stay in touch with families during the crisis:

  • Send out regular e-newsletters to parents who are still using the setting and those who are at home, this will help you keep in touch and share relevant information
  • Provide parents or a child’s temporary new setting  with your most recent summative assessment of their child’s learning and development. Make suggestions as to how they can support any skills their child was on the cusp of mastering, or that they may need a little more support with. 
  • Create an online album of photographs you have taken with the children and share with families so that children can look through them with their families.
  • If parents are willing and able to, ask if you can use Facetime, Skype or Zoom to speak with children. 
  • Ask parents to share tasks with children – such as asking them to draw a picture to share with you.
  • You could record or livestream a storytime session. Use one of the children’s favourite books and try and make it a regular activity. Parents can use the videos multiple times if needed to help keep you in their children’s minds.
  • Share some activity ideas with parents – think of things that you may have usually done in your setting that they can recreate easily at home


CPD resources for staff – trauma and loss

We would like to draw your attention to some resources from our Educational Psychology team which could be useful for you and your staff. These resources include:

  1. Trauma-informed approaches to Behaviour
  2. Loss and bereavement booklets:  
    1. Supporting Bereaved Children
    2. When Someone Close Dies
  3. Critical incident guide

These resources can be found on the Educational Psychology area of the York Education website.


COVID 19 FAQs for childminders

 The Department for Education has produced a FAQ's document for childminders relating to COVID-19, a copy of which is here.


Resources to support outdoor learning

Learning through Landscapes (LtL) have launched a Facebook group for educators on outdoor learning. LtL aim to provide Webinars, lesson ideas and resources for outdoor learning and play through the virtual forum.

Learning through the Landscapes


Forest School Update

Please see below information from Andy Mulholland on Forest School networks and the information on exploring different types of play.

Forest school Information

Exploring Play Types


Makaton Training

Please also find below details from The Makaton Charity who have made some Makaton Training available online.

 Makaton Workshops


Activities to do at home/setting

Early years home learning collection

Health body Healthy mind guides


Learning and Development Support

Communication, Language and Literacy




Key stages: early years foundation stage to key stage 2

Description: all children’s audiobooks are available for free while schools are closed.

Registration: not required




Key stages: early years foundation stage to key stage 2

Description: access to masterclasses on texts from a range of authors, including videos from the authors and activities linked to novels.

Registration: is required




Key stages: early years foundation stage to key stage 2

Description: a site with recommended booklists, categorised by age range and topic, including fiction and non-fiction. Family activities are included in the ‘Home Time’ section.

Registration: not required


Classroom Secrets


 Key stages: early years foundation stage to key stage 2

 Description: downloadable resource packs which cover a range of subjects, including reading and writing.

 Registration: not required


Personal Social and Emotional Support


Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families


Key stages: early years foundation stage to key stage 2

Description: wellbeing advice for all those supporting children and young people.

Registration: not required


British Psychological Society (BPS)


Key stages: early years foundation stage to key stage 2

Description: advice on dealing with school closures and talking to children about COVID-19.

Registration: not required


Children’s Commissioner


Key stages: early years foundation stage to key stage 2

Description: a downloadable guide for children about coronavirus.

Registration: not required




Key stages: early years foundation stage to key stage 2

Description: an educational resource for all adults on children and young people’s mental health.

Registration: not required, but registration increases functionality


The Child Bereavement Network


Key stages: early years foundation stage to key stage 2 

Description: advice on supporting grieving children during the coronavirus outbreak.

Registration: not required


Physical Development


Boogie Beebies


Key stages: early years foundation stage

Description: videos that get younger children up and dancing with CBeebies presenters.

Registration: not required


Disney 10 Minute Shakeups


Key stages: early years foundation stage to key stage 2

Description: 10-minute activities based on Disney films that count towards a child’s 60 active minutes per day.

Registration: not required




Mathematics Mastery


Description: downloadable guidance and resource packs for parents and pupils. 

Key stages: early years foundation stage, key stage 1 and key stage 2

Registration: not required




Key stages: early years foundation stage to key stage 2

Description: a range of activities. Some are interactive and some are to be completed offline. Activities are categorised by age range.

Registration: not required




Key stages: early years foundation stage and key stage 1

Description: videos for numeracy development designed for children aged 0 to 6. There are fun activities that can be applied to everyday life and play.

Registration: not required 


Top Marks


Key stages: early years foundation stage, key stage 1 and key stage 2

Description: a range of interactive maths games categorised by age group.

Registration: not required


White Rose Maths (home learning)


Key stages: early years foundation stage to key stage 2

Description: presentations and downloadable workbooks which are easy to use for parents. New material is being released each week. 

Registration: not required


Training and Development for staff teams




Early Years Alliance

ABC (Alistair Bryce Clegg)

Early years TV


SEND Guidance

Legislation around increased access to outdoor spaces has now been relaxed for people with Autism and other SEND needs. An excerpt of the guidance is copied directly here but for the full government guidance see attached link.  

15. Can I exercise more than once a day if I need to due to a significant health condition?

You can leave your home for medical need. If you (or a person in your care) have a specific health condition that requires you to leave the home to maintain your health - including if that involves travel beyond your local area - then you can do so. This could, for example, include where individuals with learning disabilities or autism require specific exercise in an open space two or three times each day - ideally in line with a care plan agreed with a medical professional.


Even in such cases, in order to reduce the spread of infection and protect those exercising, travel outside of the home should be limited, as close to your local area as possible, and you should remain at least 2 metres apart from anyone who is not a member of your household or a carer at all times.

Support can be found at the website Ambitious About Autism

 Please find Government guidance on supporting mental health and well-being for children and young people with SEND here.

 Please find FAQs from the Council for Disabled Children here


The Council for Disabled Children (CDC) has launched two mailboxes to answer questions, collate resources and share information on Coronavirus and the impact on children and young people with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND). They are designed to be used by professionals, practitioners, parents, carers and families of children and young people with SEND.

Mailbox Information

This Department for Education (DfE) guidance is for special schools, specialist colleges, local authorities and any other settings managing children and young people with complex special educational needs and disability (SEND). 

SEND Guidance

Useful Links

Information on providers currently open

DFE Guidance

Government Business Support

Business support Finder Tool

OFSTED Rolling Updates

York Council -

Children and Young People's Safeguarding Partnership Information

NDNA Coronavirus Support

Early Years Alliance Guidance & Business Advice

PACEY Guidance

NHS Advice

The National Autistic Society tips and advice

Coronavirus Testing

Relate support and advice

Young Minds Advice

Hungry Little Minds Activities

NSPCC safeguarding and child protection

Keeping Children safe - Parents' digital safety and wellbeing kit (PDF)

Guidance on Absence from School or Early Years Setting

Vulnerable Children: Guidance for Early Years Providers

Early Years Home Learning Activities


Hempsall's Managing Your Way Through COVID-19

We had excellent engagement from nurseries, playgroup, childminders at the Hempsall’s sessions 2020/21. Please see below for presentations and further information:

A-Z financial support 

In a nutshell - planning guide for early years and childcare

PACEY Symptoms and testing flow chart

York Child Minders finding your way slides 

York Nurseries and Preschools finding your way slides

York Out of School Clubs finding your way slides


Contact Information


In order to ensure that Covid-19 related queries from settings are dealt with as effectively and efficiently as possible please direct all emails to:

Quality Improvement

Early Education Funding

Other early years and childcare issues

Please also be clear in your subject heading.

For public health related enquiries (related to COVID-19 or otherwise), please contact 

Department for Education coronavirus / COVID-19 helpline: 0800 046 8687 (8am Mon - Friday) - email

Social Care - If you have significant concern regarding a vulnerable child: 

    • If the matter is urgent please contact the Front Door /MASH Monday – Friday between 8.30am and 5pm on 01904 551900 where you will be able to discuss your concerns with a social worker.
    • If it is out of hours please contact the Emergency Duty Team on 01609 780780 or if a child is at immediate risk please contact North Yorkshire Police.