MoE update 17 February 2021

Early Learning Bulletin 17 February 2021

Message from the Secretary for Education

Kia ora koutou

Today, the Prime Minister announced that Auckland will go down to Alert Level 2, and the remainder of New Zealand will move to Alert Level 1 from 11.59pm tonight. 

It’s a difficult time for those young people who have tested positive for COVID-19, and for their families and whānau. I know Papatoetoe High School is doing everything possible to support them.

I know you will join me in congratulating the Papatoetoe principal, his leadership team and the school board for the considerable work they have done, and the calm and professional manner in which they have done this in a very difficult situation.

As a precaution, the school will remain closed for the remainder of this week, with distance learning continuing. The Auckland Regional Public Health Service and our Auckland office are working with the principal of the school to get further information and advice out to the school community.

It’s so important for all of us to continue with the usual COVID-19 hygiene protocols and to track and trace everywhere we go. If you think COVID-19 wellbeing resources would be useful you can find these on our website.

The work and learning continues’ just as we continue to be available to support you. Here are the contact details for our local offices.

Below are links to template letters for parents for those that want to use them.

We’ll be in touch again if there are any developments.

Kia kaha
Iona

In today’s bulletin

  • People leaving managed isolation
  • People keep sending your weekly attendance data
  • Funding arrangements – recording absences
  • Template letters for your parent and whānau

People leaving managed isolation

We have had several enquiries about what to do to support people returning to early learning who have recently completed managed isolation, particularly whether they need to further isolate at home.

We can confirm there is no requirement for people leaving managed isolation to isolate at home for a further week. They will have received at least two negative tests for COVID-19 prior to their departure and can therefore return to work and early learning. 

They receive a letter on their departure recommending they don’t attend large gatherings for the next week or so (eg large sports events or concerts). However, this request does not apply to school or early learning settings. A school or early learning service, like other workplaces, is not considered a gathering. There are good systems in place in these environments to reduce the risk of transmission of illness, including COVID-19 (eg good cleaning and contact tracing practices). 

As with all New Zealanders, managed isolation departees will be asked to stay away from work/early learning if feeling unwell, follow good hand hygiene practices and good cough and sneeze etiquette, and keep a track of where they have been (through the NZ COVID Tracer App).

Please keep sending your weekly attendance data

With the recent change in alert levels it is important to:

  • record your attendance data in your Student Management System (SMS) for all your learners
  • send your attendance data weekly to the Ministry. 

This information is very important because we need to know so we can further understand how we can best support you during changes in alert levels.

Most SMS vendors have now set up an automatic method for you to have their weekly attendance data sent securely to us at the end of each week. 

If you have any questions, please contact your SMS vendor directly.

Funding arrangements at Alert Level 2 – Auckland

We recognise that you will be working with your parents, whānau and community to support the safe return to participation in your service. 

At alert level 2, services (including home based) can use the EC12 exemption, effective from Monday 15 February, for permanently enrolled children who do not attend the service.  Funding cannot be claimed for children who are no longer enrolled.

Services do not need to complete an EC12 form for all children but will need to follow the process outlined in your Student Management System (SMS) to apply this exemption. 

We will continue to monitor the situation and will provide further advice as the alert levels are updated.  If you have any questions or concerns please contact us at [email protected] for further advice or support.
 

Funding arrangements at Alert Level 1 – effective from Thursday 18 February 2021

We recognise that you will be working with your parents, whānau and community to support the safe return to participation in your service. 

At Alert Level 1 the funding rules return to normal. However, for the period Monday 15 February to Wednesday 17 February 2021 (3 days), while at Alert Level 2, services (including home based) can use the EC12 exemption for permanently enrolled children who did not attend the service. Funding cannot be claimed for children who are no longer enrolled.

Services do not need to complete an EC12 form for the 3 days but will need to follow the process outlined in your Student Management System (SMS) to apply this exemption. 

If you have any questions or concerns please contact us at [email protected] for further advice or support.

Letters you may choose to use to use with your parent and whānau community

Letter templates for your parents and whānau community [DOCX, 25KB]