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New proposals to help support vulnerable children and the children of key workers have been announced today.

Around £12 million has been provided for Emergency Childcare provision for key workers.

Education Minister, Peter Weir and Health Minister, Robin Swann today outlined the package of measures which is being developed including:

  • A bespoke Approved Home Childcarer Scheme aimed at enabling key workers to have their childcare needs met in their own homes;
  • Enhanced support for registered childminders who provide childcare for key workers and vulnerable children;
  • Support for registered daycare settings to remain open for key workers and vulnerable children in locations where key worker parents need them most and for those settings which have been forced to close;
  • Childcare advice and guidance for parents who are key workers, including a helpline; and
  • Advice and guidance for registered settings and providers.

Education Minister, Peter Weir said that in these unprecedented times it is essential that vulnerable children and those of key frontline staff can access safe and responsive support.

He continued: “Our starting position remains unchanged. Where it is possible to do so, children should be cared for in their own homes. Schools, pre-school education settings, registered daycare facilities and childminders should only be providing care for the children of key workers and vulnerable children.

“These new measures will sit alongside the support being provided by educational settings for children of key workers and vulnerable children.

“We want to thank all providers for the work they do to support children and parents. Your continued support and commitment at this critical time will be vital in helping

The full announcement from Minister Swann and Minister Weir is available here: