Support for families

Children’s social care

During the latest national lockdown, we will continue to visit all children and families, using both virtual (online) and face-to-face meetings as required.

Check the Camden Children’s Safeguarding Partnership website for information.

Early Help check-in service

Our Camden Family Early Help team is offering a ‘family check-in' service. This is to give extra help to children and families who may be more vulnerable during this time. Our teams will make sure families have access to essentials, such as food, medicine and supplies. They will also connect you to those who can help, if needed. 

Find out more and request an Early Help family check-in

Family health and wellbeing

Taking care of our health, and the health of our families, is particularly important at this time. We need to be smart in order to get our daily exercise, eat well and maintain emotional health and wellbeing. 

Try to eat healthily and be mindful of snacking. Remember, frozen and tinned fruit and vegetables count towards your five-a-day. A healthy diet will help your mood and energy.

The Camden Health and Wellbeing Team is offering a series of 'virtual' online sessions for families.

Find out more and book your places here

Contact us:

If you would like more support, please contact the team at healthandwellbeingteam@camden.gov.uk or call 020 7974 6736.

Here are some helpful resources and websites for keeping the whole family healthy:

The Brandon Centre has also produced this really useful guide for families. It is packed with advice and resources to help parents in Camden during the COVID-19 crisis: 

Children with special educational needs and disabilities  

We’ve put together information here for those with special educational needs and disabilities. We hope this will be helpful for these families, children, young people and those working with them. 

Support and advice for children and young people

Childline has created a new web page with information for children and young people about coronavirus. The page includes information about: 

  • what coronavirus is
  • where children and young people can find help if they are worried
  • coping if they are staying at home
  • what to do if they are feeling unwell

Young people can visit these 'Keep calm, stay connected, be safe' web pages.  

Children and young people's mental health charity, Young Minds, has also produced this blog. What to do if you’re anxious about coronavirus

Schools, colleges and nurseries

During lockdown, primary and secondary schools, as well as further education colleges, will remain closed, except for vulnerable children.

Children with at least one parent or carer who is a critical worker can also attend, although parents and carers should keep their children at home if they can. All other children will learn remotely (online) until February half-term.

Camden schools have all reviewed their risk assessments in line with local and national guidance and safety measures to keep children and staff safe – and secondary pupils, as well as staff, are taking part in regular, rapid testing at their schools. Some primary staff are also taking part in rapid community testing (see 'Keeping safe at school: guide for parents - A4 poster / flyer' below).

Children who have been advised to self-isolate at home should do so for 10 days (see our absence guide for parents and carers below).

Early years and childcare services, including children's centres, nurseries and childminders remain open, though places will be prioritised for vulnerable children and children of critical workers.

Further information and advice for parents:

Department for Education helpline

Schools, colleges or nurseries can contact the Department for Education coronavirus helpline on 0800 046 8687. Lines are open Monday to Friday, from 8am to 6pm, and Saturday to Sunday, 10am to 6pm.

Local contact email address for public health advice

Education and childcare staff can also contact our local public health teams via their email inbox, which is monitored 24/7: email your enquiry.
 

Exams in 2021

Consultation on the awarding of GCSEs and A-levels in summer 2021

Ofqual and the Department for Education have launched a consultation into how GCSE and A-level grades should be awarded this summer. The consultation closes on 29 January.

The proposals are that:

  • students would continue with their education during this academic year
  • students would be assessed by their teachers from May to early June
  • teachers would submit grades to the exam boards by mid-June
  • external quality assurance by the exam boards would take place throughout June
  • results would be issued to students once this process is complete, most likely in early July
  • student appeals could be submitted immediately following results and would first be considered by schools and colleges.

Meanwhile, many public exams and vocational assessments scheduled to take place in January 2021 were due to go ahead as planned. Please contact your child's school or college for further details.

More information and support:

Youth services

During the current national lockdown, Camden youth centres will be closed for any individual face-to-face or group sessions. Youth workers are in touch with their young people and we will be announcing a 'virtual' online programme of activities and support on Camden Rise shortly.

Our Careers and Connexions service is still running a virtual drop-in service. This is while their office at the Crowndale Centre remains closed. The virtual drop-in is open by telephone every day, Monday to Friday, from 10am to 1pm and 2pm to 4pm. 

You can chat over the phone to a Connexions careers adviser and get advice on training, education, jobs, and apprenticeships. 

For young people's mental and emotional wellbeing support, visit the Camden Rise website.

After-school and holiday play schemes

The play provision in Camden is run by community and voluntary organisations. These are funded by the Council, to provide after-school clubs and holiday play schemes for children aged four to 12. It includes specialist services for vulnerable children, young people and their families with varying needs.

After-school provision from January 2021

Providers are currently following Public Health guidance and offering provision to referred vulnerable children and children of critical workers attending their linked schools. They will run on the basis of bubbles of 15, keeping children from one school together in a single bubble wherever possible and only mixing children from different schools where absolutely necessary to provide a service. Play providers are in contact with their link schools to confirm each centre’s arrangements.

Holiday play schemes from January 2021

Providers will be following Public Health guidance regarding how they operate. Provision over February half-term 2021 is likely to be available to referred vulnerable children and children of critical workers attending linked schools. We await further Government guidance and will update this page when this guidance is published.

Temporary changes to children and young people’s emergency and inpatient health services

Children and young people’s NHS services in north London have been reviewed. This is to ensure the best emergency and planned care during the pandemic and throughout the winter. This is when pressure on local hospitals grows.

Emergency and inpatient services for children and young people have already temporarily closed at:

  • University College London Hospitals

  • the Royal Free Hospital.

This means you might need to go to a different hospital in an emergency or for a planned appointment. Children and young people’s emergency services remain open at Barnet Hospital, the Whittington Hospital and the North Middlesex University Hospital.

There are children and young people’s emergency departments at:

  • Whittington Hospital
  • Barnet Hospital
  • North Middlesex University Hospital
  • St Mary’s Hospital
  • Royal London Hospital.

Please call 111 for advice on the most appropriate place for care. For life-threatening emergencies call 999 immediately. 

University College London Hospitals and the Royal Free Hospital remain open for adult patients.

Find out more:

Contact us for support