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Translation Required: Emergency childcare settings supporting 500 pupils a day

Translation Required: Emergency childcare settings at schools in Swansea have remained open this week during what is usually half-term to ensure that key workers can continue to do their jobs.

Children's aprons

Translation Required:

Although schools have been closed since March due to the coronavirus pandemic some children of key workers as well as some of Swansea's most vulnerable young people have been attending where there is no other childcare alternatives available.

This week more than 50 schools are open as emergency childcare settings with 22 operating on Bank Holiday Monday.

On an average day around 500 children and young people attend.

Emergency childcare is just of one of many ways schools have continued to support pupils, parents and the wider community in recent months.

Russell Dwyer, headteacher at St Thomas Primary School, said: "We made a promise to our school family that we would always be there for them when we closed as a school and parents and carers have shown overwhelming appreciation in us honouring that promise.

"We have remained open every week as an emergency childcare setting, in order to assist key worker parents to continue their vital roles and at the same time we have also provided all families with online learning opportunities.

"Where families did not have a device to access online learning, we have provided one. More importantly though, we have provided a listening ear from afar, supporting families either with a friendly chat or by getting them food, financial support or specialised support, such as counselling, where needed.

"We may not all be in a building right now but our school family is alive just as much as it always is."

Cllr Jennifer Raynor, Swansea Council's Cabinet Member for Education Improvement, Learning and Skills, has paid tribute to the work and commitment of school staff.

She said: "There are many examples of schools going the extra mile in these difficult times and once again I would like to thank our incredible school staff who are doing an outstanding job in the most difficult of circumstances.

"The strong advice remains the best place for all children to be is at home with other family members wherever possible but we know this is not always possible and key workers are keeping vital services going and helping to save lives."

An up to date list of childcare settings, along with the key worker criteria, can be found at:

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