Covid-19 – Latest Guidance from the Government – 6.00pm 22nd April 2020

James Williams

Main points from today
  • Foreign Secretary, Dominic Raab, led the briefing.
  • Confident that testing would rise to 100,000 tests a day by the end of April.
  • Social distancing measures are having an effect, but we are ‘not out of the woods yet.’
  • Any reduction to lockdown measures now could lead to a second peak and a second period of lockdown.
Latest Guidance (employment and business)
HMRC have confirmed that in the first full day of operation (to midnight on Monday 20th April):-
  • 185,000 employers submitted claims
  • 1,300,000 employees reported as furloughed
  • The total value of claims was £1.5bn

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme: step by step guide for employers

Check if you can claim for your employees’ wages through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

Latest Guidance (health)
No new guidance today.

Britain’s biggest network of diagnostic labs are completed in 5 weeks – Sites in Milton Keynes, Glasgow and Alderley Park in Cheshire are now live and are already testing thousands of patient samples for coronavirus (COVID-19) each day. First published 12:54pm, 22 April 2020

Coronavirus (COVID-19): financial support for education, early years and children’s social care was updated today to align with updated HMT/HMRC guidance.

Which options should be used
Due to the variety of organisations in the education, early years and children’s social care sectors and the different types of support on offer, it may be appropriate for organisations to access a mixture of different support. However, we expect that all relevant organisations should first consider any potential options to reduce their operating cost and secure commercial loans (including CBILS, CLBILS and CCFF outlined above) before seeking to access grant paying schemes like the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme or seeking specific support from the Department for Education (DfE).

For organisations that are classified as public sector, and where there is continued public funding, staff that are supported by that public funding should not be furloughed. For public sector organisations where there is also private income which ceases or has reduced, it may be appropriate to furlough staff who would typically be paid from that private income, subject to the 5 conditions below.

We would encourage organisations to first consider how they would be able to redeploy their existing workforce to help support the coronavirus (COVID-19) response. Educational settings that are in receipt of some public funding should only furlough employees, and therefore seek support through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, if they meet the following conditions:

  • the employee works in an area of business where services are temporarily not required and where their salary is not covered by public funding
  • the employee would otherwise be made redundant or laid off
  • the employee is not involved in delivering provision that has already been funded
  • (where appropriate) the employee is not required to deliver provision for a child of a critical worker and/or vulnerable child
  • the grant from the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme would not lead to financial reserves being created
It is also essential that the grant from the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme should not be duplicative of other public grants that your organisations may receive. DfE is considering appropriate measures to monitor use of these schemes in order to detect any duplication of funding, and will be considering potential options to recover misused public funding as required.

We are also developing an online tool that will support the education, early years, and children’s social care sectors, in working through this guidance, and understanding the different funding and financial measures available to support them, and their workforce, through this period of disruption caused by coronavirus (COVID-19).

The general school guidance starts here:-
Coronavirus (COVID-19): guidance for schools and other educational settings

General Guidance
The general coronavirus guidance starts here:-

James Williams – Solicitor

James Williams

I am a qualified Employment Law and HR Solicitor. I specialise in acting for schools and advise on all aspects of employment law and HR including attending employee meetings, advising senior leaders, conducting redundancy consultations, drafting contracts of employment, advising on policies and procedures and negotiating settlement agreements.