Early Years Alliance responds as sector not included in isolation exemptions

The Early Years Alliance has commented on the announcement this morning that the early years workforce has not been included in a list of sectors to be exempt from self-isolation.

Commenting, Neil Leitch, Early Years Alliance chief executive, said:

“We are aware that the number of early years staff being asked to self-isolate is having a detrimental impact on providers’ ability to offer the essential early care and education that parents rely on. That includes the children of those key workers being asked to leave isolation for the purposes of keeping our essential services running.

“Since July of last year, the early years sector has been considered essential. So essential that even when schools closed, our settings were asked to remain open to all children - in spite of the risks to providers and their families - to ensure the country continued to run. That’s why it is absurd that government would not now include those same people in this exemption for critical workers.

“Early years providers continue to offer an essential service throughout the summer months when schools are closed. We are in conversation with government to understand why the early years has not been included in the exemptions, and how settings can be supported to navigate this period of rapidly rising case rates.”