Moving on with CALA

We’ve been just blown away by the number of daily views, parent interaction and feedback that our Family Information and Support pages (developed in response to Covid-19) have received over the last term – thank you for helping to keep us all so connected!

In recognition that the summer holidays are here and how we are so looking forward to the re-opening of our childcare settings in August we’re moving on with what information we provide whilst retaining what you told us was most useful but with a fresh new look!  Some areas are still work in progress, however, we’re delighted to announce the launch of our new Parents Portal and Practitioners Portal full of carefully selected items including Health and Wellbeing we think will be of most interest to you.  Our ‘Family Servicespage shares your favourite play/videos/songs and stories in English and Gaelic. Our ‘News from CALA Settings’ will be populated just before the start of the new term so you’ll know just what to expect when your child returns to their setting.

Why not have a look, we’d love to have your feedback https://www.careandlearningalliance.co.uk

Updated guidance on re-opening of ELC and OSC

Friday 3rd July 2020: ELC reopening guidance update

The Scottish Government Early Learning and Childcare Directorate have issued a letter to all Early Learning and Childcare providers containing an update on reopening guidance issued on the 15th June 2020.

Click here to access the letter.


ELC online sessions for Childcare Providers and Childminders

Online Support Sessions on Reopening Guidance for Childcare Settings – for childcare providers and childminders

The Scottish Government and the Care Inspectorate are hosting a series of online support sessions on reopening guidance for the childcare sector, which will begin on Friday 10th July, 2pm – 3pm.

Click here for further details and information on how to book.


Friday 3rd July: School-age childcare services reopening guidance 

The Scottish Government has released new guidance to support planning for the wider reopening of school-age childcare services in Phase 3 of Scotland’s Routemap.

The Scottish Government Early Learning and Childcare Directorate have issued a letter to all childcare providers detailing the guidance for the re-opening of Out of School Care.

Click here to access the new guidance

Weekly round-up

‘Being Prepared’ Continuous Professional Learning Sessions

Everyone at CALA is excited and optimistic that we will be shortly welcoming our children and families back to our settings across Highland. Preparations to ensure we are prepared to do this safely while still providing high-quality care and learning for our children began this week with a series of virtual learning sessions based on Scottish Guidance, sharing learning from our Keyworker Hubs and focusing on both child and practitioner Health and Wellbeing.

Over 70 staff including Service Coordinators, Childhood Practice Managers and Early Years practitioners attended the sessions. Practitioners will be further supported over the coming week with the launch of our new ‘Practitioners Portal’ on our website. The Portal is designed to serve as a ‘one-stop-shop’ for information for our practitioners.


Updated reopening guidance for childcare providers

On Tuesday 23rd June there was further information on the re-opening of Early Learning and Childcare – including Out of School from the First Minister that subject to scientific and public health advice, all childcare providers will be able to reopen from 15 July 2020, if they wish to do so.

The Scottish Government Early Learning and Childcare Directorate have issued a letter to all childcare providers detailing what this means for them.

Click here to access the letter

Further announcements and guidance are expected to be issued shortly.


Interim guidance on the use of face masks and face coverings 

The Scottish Government has released interim guidance on the wider use of face masks and face coverings in health and social care.

Click here to access guidance


Parent Club – Changes to coronavirus restrictions

As coronavirus restrictions begin to change, Parent Club recognises the many questions parents will have and how they affect their family etc. Parent Club has a section of its website dedicated to providing information to what some of these questions may be. The page includes links to:

  • Returning to work
  • Your guide to extended households
  • Changes to outdoor restrictions
  • Reopening of schools and Early Learning Childcare Settings

Click here to access the Parent Club page

New guidance to support planning for wider reopening of ELC Services

The Scottish Government published new guidance for the safe reopening of Early Learning and Childcare (ELC) services in Phase 3 of Scotland’s Routemap.

Click here to access the new guidance

The Scottish Government Early Learning and Childcare Directorate also issued a letter to all ELC’s outlining what this guidance will mean for them.

Click here to access the letter

A CALA news roundup: 5th June 2020

Think you know neglect?

Think you know neglect?

Highland Child Protection Committee in partnership with ourselves here at CALA was delighted to launch the latest free e-learning module ‘Think you know neglect?’, which,  since launch 5 days ago has been accessed by 235 users and counting. Encouraging to see everyone working together to keep children safe as now more than ever, Child Protection is everyone’s responsibility.

Access the module at www.calaelearning.co.uk


Child Protection News Bulletin for Keeping Children Safe

Issue 8 of the Child Protection News Bulletin is published and includes important updates including a COVID-19 Statement from Highland Child Protection Committee, online safety, Health and Wellbeing information and much more. Click here to access under KCS Newsletters.


Foundation Apprenticeship: Children and Young People

We were absolutely delighted to welcome new Children and Young People Foundation Apprentices this morning albeit an online virtual session first session. Candidates have got off to a great start with some tasks set for next week to help consolidate learning from today and sessions set from now until the summer holidays.

If you would like to know more about our Foundation Apprenticeship: Social Services – Children and Young People course click here


Volunteer Scotland week

It is #VolunteersWeekScot this week and we would like to take the opportunity to thank all our 26 volunteers who work across the CALA services for their outstanding support and all that they do. THANK YOU from all at #TeamCALA


Family Information Pages

We have all had many weeks of living through the COVID-19 pandemic as safely and as positively as we can. With restrictions beginning to lift we still find ourselves faced with a lot of new information to process and new ways of living to adapt to.

To make this easier for you in some small way we continue to collate the information we hope you will find most useful in the one place, to help you and your family navigate through these unprecedented times.

 You will find a wealth of information on looking after you and your child’s mental health, tips on sleep routines, behaviour and play for children of different ages on parentclub.scot as well as the raft of information on these CALA pages.

Click here to access

Watten Wee Ones

Watten Wee Ones is a voluntary run Toddler Group supported by one of our Family Practitioners, Jules Taylor.  She has shared with us how the committee has worked together to support their families during Covid-19.  Here’s what Jules had to say:

I just wanted to share the thoughtful good practice of Watten Wee Ones in supporting children’s play and learning during lockdown.

Watten Wee Ones used to be a small group, which was poorly attended but some lovely local parents agreed to form a new committee and became a CALA member group.  This enabled them to apply for funding and gave them the freedom to implement their own ideas and encourage more families from the community to join in.  The group is now thriving and last year received funding from the local wind farm which has helped them to continue to improve, providing rich play experiences for the children and families attending.  Each week they provide a variety of activities, usually in themes that run over a course of around 4 weeks supporting children’s interests.

 

Because they are not able to offer their weekly activities to the families that attend during the pandemic, the very proactive Committee has come up with the idea of putting together an activity pack to send out FREE to families that wish to receive one. 

When a family opens the pack, they find a rainbow with their child’s name on it. Packs include a whole range of inviting resources to support play experiences including kits to make and assemble, crafts, playdough, paints, puppet kits and bubbles. There are also some glue dots and lollipop sticks so they can make the box into a small world scene – nothing is wasted!

The packs have been posted out to families and here are some of the responses:

“Flora was very excited to receive her craft box today! She’s already had loads of fun with it (as did her brother and sister) and still has lots left to do! Thank you so much!!”

 “Cammie loved the box and has painted everything including herself.  Thanks so much for the box it’s been great.  We are really missing the group and Cammie has turned into a grump not being able to socialise.”

 “Amazing support and contact from Water Wee Ones, it ensures that we still feel part of a group even though we are apart.  The excitement of getting the parcel to cheer us up and give a constructive activity was just the pick me up for us mums and babies indoors every day with little social interaction.  Many thanks and thank you to the volunteers cannot wait until we are together again…. stay safe – Archie.”

The committee has done a wonderful job and this pack clearly demonstrates their ongoing commitment to supporting their families and thinking of others during these strange times.  

A huge Well Done and Thumbs Up from CALA

 

 

Update information and upcoming events

Care Inspectorate Update

ELC including childminders and out of school care

The announcement made by the First Minister on Thursday 21 May 2020 outlined the Scottish Government Route Map and a phased approach is planned to the lifting of lockdown. The First Minister was clear in her message that each stage will be reviewed and take account of scientific evidence and research before we move forward.

Click here to read more 


Share the Love 2020 – Fri 29th – Sun 31st May

The ‘Share The Love’ festival is  Who Cares? Scotland digital festival to support participation and engagement activities for people with care experience across the country during this period of isolation and social distancing.  The festival will include a variety of different activities and broadcasts that cover learning, getting active and showcasing talents. 

Click here to find out more


Words up Wednesdays

Speech and Language Therapy (SLT) team in Highland are hosting an exciting weekly opportunity on Wednesday’s during June to focus on one of the Words Up key messages each week.

Click here to find out more

Information on reopening of schools/childcare etc.

Letter to all childcare providers from Scottish Government ELC Directorate

Yesterday, the First Minister made a statement to the Scottish Parliament setting out Scotland’s routemap through and out of the crisis, including a phased approach out of lockdown.

Click on the link to access a letter from the Scottish Government Early Learning and Childcare Directorate to all childcare providers outlining what this will mean for us all.

Click here to access


Parent Club support for parents on the reopening of Schools/ELC’s

Parent Club ha provided useful information to help inform parents of how schools/ELC’s will reopen over the coming months.

Parent Club state:

“As you may have heard, schools are set to reopen this August. However, things won’t be the same as they were before the coronavirus outbreak – schools will be making changes to ensure that everyone stays safe.

On our new back to school FAQ page, we answer as many questions as we can about what those changes will be and how they’ll affect your family”

Click here to access

Information on transitions and Gaelic language learning at home resources

Early Learning and Childcare Highland

ELC Highland has posted updated information on Developmental Overviews and transitions to Primary 1 in the current situation due to COVID-19.

Read the full article on ELC Highland blog by clicking here:

 

Cluichidh sinn Còmhla’ – Resources to Support Gaelic Language Learning at Home

Cluichidh sinn Còmhla’ is a new resource created in collaboration with Early Years Practitioners who are linking ‘Bumps to Bairns’ play-based learning activities to language opportunities.

Read the full article on ELC Highland blog by clicking here

Update on the use of PPE in Childcare settings

Click on the link below to listen to a short video clip from Jason Leitch, National Clinical Director sharing information about what the science tells us and why childcare and education workers don’t need special protective equipment or face coverings while caring for children in hubs/settings

Click here to access the video

Playful Project Packs

Playful Project Packs.

We were delighted to receive a grant for £1000 form North Highland Initiatives Community Support Programme to provide Playful Project Packs.

Click here to read more about the project in the media article in the John O’Groats Journal and Caithness Courier

Update Information

Career Advice – Skills Development Scotland (SDS)

As First Minister has just announced, anyone concerned about their learning or work during the current crisis can now access free one-to-one career advice through SDS helpline on 0800 917 8000   

Click here to access the media release from SDS


Skills Development Scotland Online Portal – free access to online learning materials

SDS has introduced an online learning portal to connect people with thousands of free-to-access online learning materials. Additional opportunities will be included in the coming weeks and months.  People who have been furloughed or made redundant are being encouraged to develop their skills with the help of this new online resource.

Click here to access the media release from SDS


Children’s Parliament – National children’s wellbeing survey

Children’s Parliament is supporting a national survey for children aged 8 to 14 years old. It is designed to measure the wellbeing of children during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The survey is anonymous and can be accessed here.


Care Inspectorate – Young inspectors video message 

Our young inspectors have made a video to share their thoughts and ideas about staying safe and getting through the lockdown