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What to expect when childcare services reopen this month

By Sarah Finnan

June 22, 2020 at 4:03pm

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Créches, preschools and childminders are all due to reopen at the end of this month and the government has just released a set of guidelines advising parents and guardians what to expect going forward.

Saying that the lives of young children changed suddenly when childcare services and schools closed back in March, the Department of Children and Youth Affairs has advised parents that there are a number of actions parents can take at home to support these important transitions.

Childcare services will make use of a specialised 'play pod' model that restricts interactions between closed groups of children and adults as an alternative to social distancing which is not often possible with young children. Aimed at helping to limit the number of people a child has contact with, the play pods will also facilitate contact tracing and "support close, positive interactions between children and their adult caregivers".

Acknowledging that many children may be anxious about leaving their families after so much time together, authorities have suggested a number of ideas that parents can use to prepare children ahead of the return to school. Those include encouraging children to talk about their feelings and reminding them that there are many positives to the situation - including getting back to see their friends again.

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