Rauma early childhood education services preparing for absences due to Covid-19

The City of Rauma has prepared a contingency plan concerning measures to be taken in the event of a significant shortage of staff due to the Covid-19 virus. Measures will be taken only if there are a large number of absences among staff and the are no substitutes available.

Measures in the plan relate to daycare hours, combining services, personnel transfers, halting afternoon activities and lastly caring for the children at home.

– The city has a responsibility to produce and secure early childhood education services by law. We have prepared the contingency plan, which will be gradually implemented if we are unable to provide the services safely. So far no measures have been necessary to implement and they won’t be until they are absolutely needed. To fill for absent personnel substitutes will be recruited primarily, acting director of early childhood education Jaana Ahvenjärvi says.

If there is a shortage of staff, guardians will be requested to notify precise daily care times for their children so that work hours for employees can be organized accordingly. Changes in care hours should also be notified without delay.

Additionally, daycare service hours can be centralized for example from 7.30 AM to 4.30 PM. In this occasion, guardians are asked to arrange for the child’s need for care within the reduced opening hours. Changes in opening hours will be informed about as early as possible. Early childhood education personnel will change reported times to match the daycare centers opening hours.

Daycares or groups may have to be closed and functions centralized. Also, open early childhood education clubs and other open activities may have to be halted.

Personnel may be moved from one group or center to another. Consulting special educators and Finnish as a second language teacher, Papinpelto round-the-clock care special education teacher and sociologist will be relocated into child group work temporarily if needed.

After school activities connected to schools can be halted for a limited time and personnel moved to early childhood education operations.

In extreme situations, guardians are recommended to arrange the child’s care in other ways.

– If the child cannot be brought into early childhood education due to a shortage of staff, payments will not be collected. The implementation of this last resort will require a decision from the education board regarding payment alleviation. The matter will be prepared for the board if needed, Ahvenjärvi says.