12 May: Update on Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme will continue to operate in some form until the end of October this year.
Chancellor Rishi Sunak has announced that:
- Until the end of July there will be no changes to the scheme – it will continue to pay 80% of the salaries of staff that are furloughed
- From August onwards it will be more flexible with employers able to bring people back part-time
- At this point the cost of the scheme will be shared between employer and HMRC payments
- The net result will be that those who are furloughed will continue to receive 80% of their earnings between the Government and employers.
Purnima Tanuku OBE, Chief Executive of National Day Nurseries Association (NDNA), said: “Today’s announcement will be a great relief to the dedicated professionals and employers in the early years.
“Many nurseries, who were looking at June as the end of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, will have been nervous about how they would be able to keep staff on with far fewer children attending.
“A lot of childcare providers in Scotland and Wales have told us that they haven’t had enough children attending to be able to stay open, and with the current lockdown conditions extending, there remains concerns for their financial future. For those who are open we know that shielding and reduced demand mean not all staff are needed in settings.
“We have just seen the government announce plans to get children returning to early years settings from the beginning of June in England, as long as it is safe to do so. However, we know that safety measures, shielding and reduced demand may mean not all staff will be able to return from day one.
"A lot of childcare providers in Scotland and Wales have told us that they haven’t had enough children attending to be able to stay open, and with the current lockdown conditions extending, there remains concerns for their financial future. For those who have been open in these nations, we know that shielding and reduced demand mean not all staff are needed in settings.
"The extension of the scheme and the ability to bring staff back part-time will help childcare providers respond to increasing, but uncertain demand for childcare places. It will also mean that those staff who need to remain shielded, will be able to do this.
“Since the scheme was announced, we have written to the Chancellor and had several meeting with Treasury officials, calling for more flexibility and continued financial support to ensure that childcare staff could be supported while the needs of children in settings could still be met.”
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