Skip to content

  Give feedback Menu  Close 

You can follow service updates to all Hertfordshire County Council services (including libraries and schools) on their Coronavirus service updates page.

Speak to a team

Find all of the contact details and opening times on our contact a service page.

Resource area

We have collected practical resources to help you on a number of topics - whether you are home educating, or need strategies for mental wellbeing and building daily routines.

View our Resources Area now.

Test and Trace £500 payments for parents

15 April 2021

The Department for Education (DfE) have announced that parents and carers of children who have been advised to self-isolate by their education setting or by NHS Test and Trace are now able to apply for a Test and Trace Support Payment of £500, if they are eligible (which includes being in receipt of certain low-income benefits).

The Test and Trace Support Payment scheme is arranged through district and borough councils in Hertfordshire, and ensures that parents receive some financial support if they are unable to attend work due to childcare responsibilities and are unable to work from home. Learn more on GOV.uk about test and trace support payments.

The Test and Trace Support Payment Scheme ends on Wednesday 30 June.

Nurseries, schools, colleges and further education providers are required to provide a letter to all parents or carers of children advised to self-isolate, to support their application to the Test and Trace Support Payment scheme.

Which district am I in?

Information about face coverings in schools

9 April 2021

The Department for Education (DfE) announced on Tuesday (6 April) that face coverings should continue to be worn in secondary schools and college classrooms when students return after the Easter break.

Those who rely on visual signals for communication, or speak to or provide support to those individuals, are still exempt from any requirement to wear face coverings in schools or in public places.

It is expected that face coverings will no longer be required in classrooms, or by students in other communal areas, at step 3 of the roadmap, which will be no earlier than 17 May. At that point, the next easing of restrictions, including increased social contact indoors, will be confirmed following a review of the latest data on infection and vaccination rates.

There are updates on gov.uk's following guidance to reflect this announcement:

Shielding guidance to be paused for clinically extremely vulnerable people

29 March 2021

From Thursday 1 April, shielding guidance will be paused for clinically extremely vulnerable people. From that date they will no longer be advised to shield and must continue to follow the national restrictions that are in place for everyone.

From Thursday 1 April:  

  • all clinically extremely vulnerable children should attend early years provision, school, college, wraparound childcare and out-of-school settings, unless they are one of the very small number of children under paediatric or other specialist care and have been advised by their GP or clinician not to attend. 
  • Clinically extremely vulnerable students who are enrolled in practical, or practice-based (including creative arts) courses should return to in-person teaching.  
  • Clinically extremely vulnerable staff are advised to continue to work from home where possible, but if they cannot work from home, they should now attend their workplace. 

 There is guidance to assist school leaders in actions they should take to minimise the risk of transmission of coronavirus (COVID-19) in their setting. This includes public health advice, endorsed by Public Health England (PHE).  

Message to education leaders from Gavin Williamson, Secretary of State for Education

8 March 2021

Gavin Williamson has written to education leaders to thank them for the huge effort they have made to provide education and support to their pupils throughout the pandemic. He also sets out in more detail the easing of restrictions on face to face teaching. Here's a summary of his letter:

Return to school

  • All schools, colleges and further education settings should allow full attendance from 8 March.
  • Wraparound childcare, including childminders should also allow attendance for eligible children.
  • Secondary schools and colleges are able to phase return over the week of 8 March to allow students to be offered testing on return.
  • The usual rules and duties around school attendance are in place from 8 March (including mandatory attendance). All schools should communicate expectations about regular attendance to pupils and parents.
  • Schools should identify pupils at risk of disengagement and develop plans to re-engage them.
  • In further education settings, we expect that every 16 to 19 student (or 19 to 25 with an EHCP) will undertake the majority of their planned hours on site. For adults, further education providers should determine the appropriate balance of on-site and remote education and training, based on the type of programme and the student’s ability to engage with the programme remotely.

Rapid testing

  • Twice-weekly asymptomatic testing is available for the workforce of schools, colleges and nurseries.
  • Secondary schools and colleges have also been able to offer testing on return for their students, and we are now asking those leaders to put this in place for all students across the week of the 8 March as they return.
  • The asymptomatic testing programme will also offer regular twice weekly testing of secondary school and college students at home.
  • Rapid testing is in place for those arriving or staying at university.
  • All staff at private, voluntary and independent nurseries will have access to tests to use twice weekly at home
  • Childminders can continue to access community testing

Safety measures

  • We recommend that face coverings should be worn by staff and pupils in year 7 and above where social distancing cannot easily be maintained outside of classrooms, such as in corridors and communal areas.
  • In the same settings for a limited period, we recommend the use of face coverings in classrooms unless wearing a face covering would impact on the ability to take part in exercise or strenuous activity, for example in PE lessons, or for those who are exempt from wearing a face covering.
  • In primary schools and early years settings, face coverings should be worn by staff and adult visitors where social distancing between adults is not possible.
  • Children in primary schools do not need to wear a face covering.

Education recovery and qualifications

  • The government is prioritising education as we begin to ease restrictions.
  • Ofqual will be setting out further details of the alternative arrangements to exams very soon. This follows the consultation which received over 100,000 responses.

Covid recovery funding in education

8 March 2021

On 24 February, the government announced an extra £700m to give early years settings, schools, providers of 16-19 education – including specialist settings - and local authorities the tools they need to target support for all students. Details of the package are:

Recovery Premium

A new one-off £302m Recovery Premium for state primary and secondary schools, to support pupils who need it most. Primary schools will receive around £6,000 additional funding, and secondaries around £22,000 additional funding. Schools can use the funding from September, and they choose how they spend it. They could lay on additional clubs or activities or other evidence-based approaches for supporting the most disadvantaged pupils, including those with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND).The Recovery Premium will be allocated to schools based on the same methodology as the pupil premium. Pupil premium eligible pupils in mainstream schools will attract £145 to their school and pupil premium eligible pupils in special schools, bases and other special provision will attract £290 over the next academic year.

Tutoring

The announcement confirmed £200 million to fund tutoring, which has been shown to boost learning by as much as 3 - 5 months. This will include:

  • An expansion of the National Tutoring Programme for primary and secondary schools, to increase access to high-quality tuition for disadvantaged pupils, helping to accelerate their academic progress. We are committed to being as inclusive as possible by supplying suitable provision for supporting SEND pupils within all schools.
  • An extension of the 16 - 19 Tuition Fund for a further year to support more students in English, maths, and other vocational and academic subjects. Providers are asked to consider the needs of students with SEND when prioritising students that would benefit most for small group tuition. Students with SEND aged 19 - 24 who have an education, health and care plan will be eligible for the Tuition Fund where they meet the criteria. Adults are able to pause their learning where it has been significantly impacted by coronavirus and, in agreement with their provider, pick up from where they left off at a later date.
  • Support for early language development in the early years, supporting a critical stage of child development.

Summer Schools

£200 million will be available to all secondary schools, including specialist settings, to deliver face-to-face summer schools. Schools will be able to target provision based on pupils’ needs but the government suggests they may want to initially target incoming year 7 pupils. This is alongside wider support funded through the Holiday Activities and Food Programme across the country. A range of high-quality online resources provided by Oak National Academy, will be available for all teachers and pupils, starting from the summer term and throughout summer holidays. The funding available for the summer schools programme supports a 2-week scheme for pupils most in need. We expect that most schools will want to offer a mix of academic, enrichment and pastoral activity to appeal to pupils and deliver the range of benefits that the evidence shows summer schools can deliver. Schools will need to determine how best to use the funding and staff the scheme to ensure that the extra time is used effectively.

Vaccinations for unpaid carers aged 16 and over

25 February 2021

GPs have been given the green light to invite people in priority groups 5 and 6 to have their vaccine - and this includes unpaid carers. You will be contacted by the NHS and asked to book your appointment at a convenient local vaccination centre. Carers will be offered the vaccine if:

  • they are aged 16 and over
  • they support an adult who is at a serious clinical risk from Covid and with whom you have close personal contact or face to face contact
  • they are identified as a carer in their GP's system
    or
  • they are eligible for Carer's Allowance

The charity Contact has more guidance on vaccines for unpaid carers. Or, if you would like to speak to someone to help understand this information, you can contact Carers in Hertfordshire on 01992 58 69 69 or email contact@carersinherts.org.uk 

If you are an unpaid carer who has been refused a vaccination

It’s great to hear so many of you have already had your vaccinations, but we know the process has not been smooth for everyone. 

As a result of feedback from parents, Contact has produced a useful template letter to help parents complain if their GP tells them they are not a priority for the COVID-19 vaccine. You will find the template letter on Contact's regularly updated COVID vaccination: Your Questions Answered page.

The good news is that unpaid carers aged 18+ who are eligible for Carer's Allowance are now able to book a Covid vaccine online or by calling 119 free of charge, between 7am - 11pm seven days a week. If you are a carer under 18 years old, you will not be able to book using the national booking service. You will need to wait to be invited by your local vaccine service, so you can receive a Pfizer vaccine.

Update from Children and Young People's Therapy Service

24 February 2021

Following the announcement from the Prime Minister on 22 February 2021, advising that all children and young people will return to educational settings from 8 March 2021, there will be no change to the Children and Young People’s Therapy service offer. We will continue to comply with social distancing measures when delivering appointments by using a virtual first approach. Therapists will deliver face to face intervention where indicated, wearing appropriate PPE for all sessions, both in education settings, clinic or at home. Within Hertfordshire Community Trust (the clinical commissioning group that provides the service) all staff have been offered the Covid vaccination and those who are undertaking face to face appointments are regularly self-testing using a Lateral Flow test. We will continue to review service delivery in line with government guidance.

Vaccinations for people aged 16 and above with a learning disability

17 February 2021

We are very pleased that Hertfordshire has been doing well in vaccinating the local population. In line with the government's vaccination programme some people with severe or profound learning disabilities (making them 'clinically extremely vulnerable') in Hertfordshire have now been asked to come for their first jab, and more will be invited over the coming weeks. This includes younger adults who are 16 – 18 years old, who have a learning disability. It is also likely that registered carers will also be offered the opportunity to have their vaccination, when they accompany someone to have their vaccine.

GPs will be using their records to contact people who are registered with them as having a learning disability. For most people this will be a letter, text message or a phone call from your local GP. This contact will include all the information needed to book appointments.

There is no need for individuals or their carers to phone their surgery directly, NHS England advises that you should wait to be contacted. However, if individuals or their carers do not think they are on their GP's learning disability register, they may want to contact the GP to make sure that they are aware.

If you need additional support or advice, take a look at Hertfordshire County Council's vaccine FAQs.

 

Cookies

Like many other websites, we place small information files called 'cookies' on your computer.

Why do we use cookies?

To remember your settings, for example your language and location. This means you don’t have to keep entering these details when you visit a new page.

To find out how you use the site to help us update and improve it.

How do I change my cookie settings?

You can change the settings of your web browser so that it won’t accept cookies. For more information visit AboutCookies.org.

But, doing this may stop you from using some of the online features and services on this website. 

Cookies we use

Cookies do a lot of different jobs, and we use 2 types of cookies:

Required functionality cookies – these cookies are essential for the website to work.

Performance and feature cookies – these cookies help to improve the performance and feel of this website, for example providing you with personalised services.


Take a look at a list of cookies we use on our website:

NameTypeHow we use itHow long we use the information for

ASP.Net_Sessions

 

Required functionality

An automatic cookie set by our software. 

Just for the time you are on our website.

ServerID

 

Required functionality

An automatic cookie set by our software. 

Just for the time you are on our website.

_ga

Required functionality

To track the effectiveness of our website using Google Analytics. 

2 years

saved-pages

Performance and feature

To save the pages that you visit by clicking the heart at the top of the page. 

1 month

geoPostcode

Performance and feature

This stores your postcode (or partial postcode) when we ask you for your location.

Just for the time you are on our website or 30 days (you choose this).

geoCoordinates

Performance and feature

This stores your location as a pair of latitude / longitude coordinates.

Just for the time you are on our website or 30 days (you choose this).

reckonerName-history

Performance and feature

This keeps a history of all answers submitted to the ready reckoner.

This is set in the control for each ready reckoner. If you haven't interacted with the ready reckoner for the set amount of days, the cookies are deleted.

reckonerName-content

Performance and feature

This keeps a history of what content cards are clicked on when using the ready reckoner.

This is set in the control for each ready reckoner. If you haven't interacted with the ready reckoner for the set amount of days, the cookies are deleted.

SQ_SYSTEM_SESSION

Required functionality

This used to track user sessions on forms hosted on eservices.hertfordshire.gov.uk

Just for the time you are on our website.


Third party cookies

There are links and content from other sites and services on our website. These sites and services set their own cookies.

Below are a list of cookies that the other sites and services use:

Service namePurposeMore information

Google analytics (_utma/b/c/z)

These are used to compile reports for us on how people use this site.

Cookies of the same names are also used for the same purpose by other websites such as Building FuturesCountryside Management Service and Hertfordshire LIS.

Visit the Google Analytics website for more information about the cookies they use.

You can prevent data from being collected and used by Google Analytics by installing Google's Opt-out Browser Add-on.

Google Translation - googtrans

This cookie is used to remember which language to translate each page into if you have chosen to do so.

It expires at the end of your browser session.

Bing

We use a Bing cookie to track the success of our marketing campaigns and make them more efficient.

Visit Bing to find out more about their cookies.

Google

We use a Google cookie to track the success of our marketing campaigns and make them more efficient.

Visit Google to find out more about their cookies.

Facebook

We have a number of presences on Facebook, which we may link to. Facebook may set some of its own cookies if you follow these links.

Visit Facebook to find out more about their cookies.

Twitter

We have a number of presences and feeds on Twitter, which you may wish to follow or read from this website. Twitter may set some of its own cookies.

Visit Twitter to find out more about their cookies.

YouTube

We have a YouTube channel, which we may link to. YouTube may set some of its own cookies if you follow those links.

Visit YouTube to find out more about their cookies.

Netloan

This ASP.NET_Sessionid cookie is essential for the Netloan secure online payments website to work, and is set when you arrive to the site. This cookie is deleted when you close your browser.

 

HotJar

This session cookie is set to let Hotjar know whether that visitor is included in the sample which is used to generate funnels.

Visit HotJar to find out more about their cookies.

Siteimprove

These cookies are set to help us report on how people are using the site so we can improve it.

Visit Siteimprove to learn more about their cookies.