DfE contingency framework – what it says about FE

Most teaching should move online and employers should consider if more staff could work from home, according to the DfE guidance
27th November 2020, 2:53pm

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DfE contingency framework – what it says about FE

https://www.tes.com/magazine/archive/dfe-contingency-framework-what-it-says-about-fe
Colleges Could Move To Remote Learning For All But Some Students In Areas Where The Prevalence Of Covid-19 Is Very High

Colleges could move to remote learning for all but the most vulnerable young people, priority learners and the children of key workers in areas where the prevalence of coronavirus is extremely high, the Department for Education has said.

The DfE has published its contingency framework for education settings - which it says is designed to act as a containment measure where "there is extremely high prevalence of coronavirus" and "other measures have already been implemented".

The DfE has said it is "primarily a means of limiting the spread of coronavirus in educational settings and the wider community".


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"The contingency framework set out in this section describes how any restrictions to childcare and educational settings should be implemented," it states. "It is designed to be flexible and responsive to local circumstances. Restrictions may be advised for one, some or all of the types of setting.

"An educational setting should not move to implement restrictive measures of the kind set out in the contingency framework without the explicit agreement of the DfE."

According to the government, where the contingency framework is implemented, FE providers should allow daily attendance only to vulnerable young people, the children of critical workers and priority learners such as students in exam or final assessment year groups, or who are unable to complete their educational programme remotely.

"High-quality remote education should be provided for all other students, who should not attend. Special post-16 institutions should continue to allow students to attend as per their usual timetable."

For apprenticeship providers, the DfE said that where the contingency framework was implemented, "apprenticeship delivery and assessment (including the assessment of functional skills qualifications) is extremely flexible and should continue to take place in person where doing so online is not possible".

The DfE added that FE providers should also consider if the contingency framework offered more opportunities for staff to work at home, "given reduced numbers of students on-site and the use of remote education for students scheduled to be at home", while "employers should have regard to staff work-life balance and wellbeing".

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