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Related: Lockdown Learning, discuss home schooling during lockdown.


Are we key worker parents and our families just not important?

123 replies

Bbq1 · 19/03/2020 16:42

Fuming and so angry that schools are opening for children of key workers. It's ok for non working parents and non essential people to stay at home but the rest of us working people are just thrown to the dogs to take our chances? I work in an educational setting where the sick and vulnerable children will attend while we are exposed to the illness. Surely they are the very children that should be staying home while schools open for healthy children?

OP posts:

handmedownqueen · 19/03/2020 22:36

We are both key workers as doctors and will be sending our two to school and are grateful for the help we are being given and that our kids are having a bit of normality. DH is more frontline than me and shocked me by saying he wanted to update his will today


justchecking1 · 20/03/2020 09:13

  • My team of specialist clinicians (some - including me - with 20+ years of training and experience) have been given the heads up we may be redeployed as care assistants and porters. Because our highly specialist clinical skills are, as of now, less relevant than that care work.

    Whether we'll continue to be paid as the specialists we are, or at the pay band of the work we'll be doing is up in the air. If the latter, then I won't be able to pay my bills.

justchecking1 · 20/03/2020 09:15

^ sorry, posted too soon.

Assuming you're in the NHS of course you'll be pay protected


Riv · 20/03/2020 10:51

@ goldengranny "You won't be looking after sick and 'medically' vulnerable children"
I am not sure where you have got that information from. Sick and medically vulnerable children have ECHPs. They are the sort of child included in the governments plan for attending school. Teachers and teaching assistants in special schools routinely teach and care for these children, and yes, they WILL be expected to be given a school place during this crisis. They have not been excluded at all, unless they are actually showing the symptoms of the virus.


Riv · 20/03/2020 10:55

and my fear is not so much the risk posed to the staff and the normally healthy children and adolescents, although that is a worry - it's the risk posed to these medically vulnerable children.


handmedownqueen · 20/03/2020 16:40

Just heard from my school that only 50 out of 1400 students are going to be in. So clear key workers parents are not abusing this. Interestingly school are struggling to staff this - seems a lot of staff suddenly feel they need to self isolate Confused


Katykitten2 · 21/03/2020 09:33

According to my son's school SEN do not qualify, there needs to be an education and health plan in plce.


Riv · 21/03/2020 17:33

The special schools here are going to be open as usual. The teachers have been told to prepare to work full time over the Easter holidays too.
The head has agreed to set up childcare for the staff at the school rather than them being at their local school. Her reasoning is not that it makes it easy for the staff (although it does) it’s more to keep their contact pool smaller. If they go to their local school the children have more chance of contacting someone with the infection and spreading it to their parents and ultimately to the vulnerable students.


Riv · 21/03/2020 17:35

And apparently they had a third of the staff off sick or in isolation last week.


2020bye · 21/03/2020 17:40

There’s a lot of teachers moaning about this. People are risking their lives working 12 hour shifts and others are keeping the country running... the least you could do is babysit their kids during your normal working hours on normal pay Hmm


Katykitten2 · 21/03/2020 18:10

Children with SEN are NOT entitled to a school place and I should know as I'm the parent of one. As numerous people have said 'it is what it is'.


Riv · 21/03/2020 23:17

Children with SEN are NOT entitled to a school place true, unless their needs are so severe that they need an EHCP. Or their parents are both key workers.
the least you could do is babysit their kids during your normal working hours on normal pay On a basic level a babysitter tends to look after maybe three or four children at a time and entertains them - a teacher has to care for around 30 children at a time, support their learning, assess and be accountable for their progress. A special school teacher has less students, but each one has additional needs that can't be met in a mainstream classroom - including a wide variety of medical problems, physical difficulties and very severe behavioural needs. However, in the current crisis with so many school staff ill or isolated there may be times when care takes precedence over teaching from a safety point of view.
Most teachers have no problem doing their normal job during their normal hours. Some do grumble about now having to also work full time through their Easter holiday. Mainly because that's when they write reports, update assessments and prepare the lesson detail for the summer term and the outline plans for the autumn term.
Most are grateful because, unlike many in this difficult time, they have a job and will be paid. They only have the normal level of stress about bills, not the very real worry of so many who have no income or are loosing their jobs.
There are some, just like others including medical staff, who need a moan and let off steam about it all.


tangledyarn · 21/03/2020 23:46

It's just necessary. In normal life it wouldn't be fair, most parents would rather be at home with their kids, but to keep essential services running kids need looking after..theres no other answer to that. I work for the nhs but in a non medical role (mh) I need to keep going to work because the whole nhs is literally going to be at crisis point in a way that we cant even imagine, and if I'm redeployed as a cleaner or a porter I'll do that instead.


BilboBercow · 22/03/2020 00:47

I'm a key worker. Tbh as an analyst in banking I don't think the country will grind to a halt without me. However I'll be going to work and sending my dd to school because I'm a lone parent and I need to pay the Bill's.
Unfortunately I have absolutely no other available childcare and will need to convince work to let me either cut my hours or work nightshift because while people who need to self isolate are fully paid, people with no childcare are paid diddly squat and will most likely not have requests for extended unpaid leave approved either


March20 · 25/03/2020 23:39

Even some key workers have stress of schooling like myself as my child will have to attend a complete new school. Also I work on the front line & come home to putting my child at risk. I think it’s a sh*t time for everyone but considering how it’s going I would rather be jobless and look after my child myself. Fairs we get a salary but at what price?


Randomschoolworker19 · 26/03/2020 00:10

I'm also a key worker working in a school and your attitude stinks.

Everyone has to do their bit and our roll is incredibly important. By staying open to the children of other key workers such as doctors and nurses we're enabling them to do their jobs and save lives.

Don't be so selfish.


March20 · 26/03/2020 07:14

I’m not sure what your rattled about. I totally agree with you. That’s why I said it’s a sh*t for all. Teachers are so important I never said they weren’t of course they. However unless your a nurse ( I am) it’s not a case of my job is more important it’s not tbh but currently in MY OPINION it is life threatening and worrying as a lone parent. I was just saying.

Lots of nurses & doctors are going off sick 10 members on my ward at the minute. I do more than “my bit”.


Glittergayle · 28/03/2020 08:03

Is it wrong that I don't want to go to work and send my child to school, even though I am classed as a key worker? I dont believe there's anything key about my job, and unfortunately us call centre workers have been generalised, just because we work for a telecommunications company! However I'm not an engineer, I don't answer phone calls about technical faults.... therefore it frustrates me that I am classed as critical when that is clearly not correct. We have been in isolation which finishes on Tuesday, and I'm scared to send my child to school in case she gets ill. I feel I am putting my child at risk for no reason whatsoever. I understand why NHS workers have to send their kids to school - what they do is worthwhile and they are saving thousands of lives! Respect! But I am not doing anything that links to the coronavirus whatsoever! I want to be at home with my daughter keeping her safe, but I feel helpless! I wish there was something I could do...


March20 · 28/03/2020 08:30

Teachers are getting off lightly. Being around the children is a low chance of you getting the COVID-19. Doctors and nurses were not expecting this though I think you are missing the point. I’m not sure why teachers are complying the cleaners are probably more at risk or a supermarket worker as they are so busy. A lot of school have closed so surely that means most teachers are not needed?! As they are a lot less kids to teach.


FedUpWithThisToday · 28/03/2020 08:34

I'm a key worker. I'm going to work. My DH is a key worker and going to work.

My children will be in school as they are too young to fend for themselves.

Someone needs to be with my children and the other key worker children, and that job falls to the teachers.

The teachers are being paid to be in school.

I am being paid to be in my role.

This may sound controversial. I am not knocking teachers, they are incredible and I am very very grateful for their help right now. But - they are being paid their normal salary for doing less than they normally do in terms of workload. NHS workers are being paid normal salary for doing more than they normally do in terms of workload. Both groups are exposed to coronavirus risk,. Many NHS staff are at greater risk. Why would a teacher complain? I'm confused. Confused


Vinylsamso · 28/03/2020 08:38

So annoying to be getting slated at this time!
Nearly everyone can find some unfairness in this situation but you think you’re problems trump everyone else’s!

Lots of keyworkers HAVE to keep going to work now.

I’m out there day after day and as a single parent I have to put my child at risk.

We earn crap money, in jobs that are hard work.

We are working for no extra money. We will get no pay rise, no bonuses from this.

If we get sick we will get two weeks SSP, then nothing.

We cannot be furloughed.

Do you not think that I’d like to go home and sit on my sofa in safety for 80% of my wage?

Selfish! You are self absorbed. Nearly everyone has got a problem right now. No one needs your jealous and judgement.


Vinylsamso · 28/03/2020 08:41

One thing I’ve learnt throughout this is that everyone who is “fuming” is an absolute drama queen, martyr.
I’m going to make sure I run a mile from everybody that uses the word fuming in future. Hysterical critters.


BuggerOffAndGoodDayToYou · 28/03/2020 09:18

Why would a teacher complain? I'm confused.

None of the ones I am working with are complaining! (Well one said “I’m not paid to be a babysitter” but was soon slapped into line - figuratively).

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