I am sure that you are all aware of the government guidance on how to manage the coronavirus pandemic and that you are doing your best to follow it as far as is practicable.
The government announced school closures last night with effect from Friday 20th March 2020 for all children except for those who are considered to be vulnerable. I have been informed that the term “vulnerable” includes any children with an Education and Health Care Plan or those who have an allocated social worker. This definition will include all looked-after children regardless of whether they are in foster care or residential care.
Consequently, as long as the government maintain their current stance, your foster children should continue to have some sort of educational provision. I do not yet know what this will be and it may be that they are expected to attend an alternative location or provision to their usual school.
It would help greatly if you could contact your foster child’s current education provision to find out what arrangements they are making for their “vulnerable” children as they are best placed to advise you on this.
If you, or anyone in your family has been in contact with someone who has contracted Covid-19, or you or anyone in your family begins to show symptoms of Covid-19, then please follow the government’s guidelines on self-isolation, which currently say 7 days if you live alone or 14 days if there are more people living in the same home.
It is essential that you let us know if you are self-isolating your family and foster child/children as the children’s Local Authority need to be kept informed.
Covid-19 has now been categorised as a notifiable disease and consequently, should any of you or your family be tested positive for the coronavirus, I have a duty to inform OFSTED immediately so please advise me if this occurs.
We have currently suspended all home visits and are not physically attending meetings. This decision includes all foster carers and staff. Should meetings go ahead, please be available to make your contribution either by phone or Skype or Facetime. We are making decisions daily based on government advice and will keep you informed by email of what our policy is.
The nurturing attachment training is scheduled to start after Easter, but this will remain under review.
As ever, all of us are available by phone and your ongoing supervisions will continue, but will be undertaken either by phone or by Skype or Facetime, whichever method you are most comfortable with.
Don’t hesitate to get in touch if you have any questions or wish to discuss thing further.