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3rd Sept 2020

Reminder to submit the daily online educational settings status form to the Department for Education

We understand that this is a busy time for schools and colleges as you welcome children and young people back into education safely whilst ensuring they get the best possible start to this academic year.

We would like to thank those schools and colleges that have completed the daily return to date and ask you to please continue to provide information on your educational setting’s status. Please complete the educational setting status form by 12 noon daily.

Your data helps us build a national picture of educational provision so that we can focus support more effectively, monitor the impact of the virus, help inform the government’s response and ensure children are safe.

Further guidance on completing the educational setting status form can be found in the guidance on recording attendance during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

Letter to school and college leaders on coronavirus (COVID-19) testing

The Department of Health and Social Care, NHS Test and Trace, and Public Health England issued a letter to school and college leaders today providing clarity on when students and staff should be tested for coronavirus (COVID-19).

It is vital that only if children or staff develop symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19) – a high temperature, a new, continuous cough, or a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste – do educational settings ask them to self-isolate and recommend they get a test. The NHS Test and Trace system is fully up and running, but capacity must be protected for those with symptoms of the virus.

Updated guidance on initial teacher training (ITT)

We have updated our guidance for initial teacher training (ITT) providers to include information on degree entry requirements and the temporary relaxation of criteria for early years ITT.

We have also provided information on encouraging overseas nationals to pursue becoming a teacher in England.

Ofsted plans for a phased return to inspection from September 2020

Ofsted will be carrying out a phased return to inspection, starting with an interim period of visits during the autumn term, as set out in their education plans from September 2020. These will look at how schools and colleges are getting pupils back up to speed after so long at home, and will not be graded.

Guidance is available on how Ofsted will carry out interim visits for:

Ofsted intend to resume full inspections in January 2021, but we are keeping the exact timing under review.

Guidance for residential education settings with international students

We have published new guidance for residential education settings that have international students who are under the age of 18. This guidance contains advice on the collection and transfer of students who are travelling to a residential education setting in England.

The guidance includes advice on what to do when the student arrives and what to do if students arriving at a residential setting develop symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19).

Exam Results Helpline now available until 18 September

The Exam Results Helpline, delivered by the National Careers Service, has been extended and will now be available until 18 September to provide additional support to students and their parents as they consider their next steps. Callers to the helpline will have direct access to experienced careers advisers who can advise on the different options available to them including T levels, A levels, GCSEs, BTECs, apprenticeships and other vocational options. Support will also be available on topics such as clearing, university, gap years and the autumn exam series.

Phone: 0800 100 900

Opening hours: Monday to Sunday from 8am to 10pm

Department for Education coronavirus (COVID-19) helpline

The Department for Education coronavirus (COVID-19) helpline is available to answer questions about COVID-19 relating to education and children’s social care. Staff, parents and young people can contact this helpline by calling:

Phone: 0800 046 8687

Opening hours:

Monday to Friday from 8am to 6pm