Covid-19 - Latest Updates

New Short-Term Redeployment of SNAs

The DES has announced a new short-term redeployment initiative for all SNAs to be available to work in some essential public services as part of the Government’s response to Covid-19 (DES Circular 27/2020).

What is the Process?

  • The Board of Management is required to forward a questionnaire to all SNAs by Friday 3 April. SNAs will be required to complete the online questionnaire by Friday 7 April and details will be uploaded for the temporary assignment process. It is the responsibility of the Board that all SNAs complete the questionnaire
  • The Public Appointments Service and HSE will match an SNAs skill set with requirements before making contact with details of the reassignment role and location of work. This will be completed following Board notification.

Where will SNAs be redeployed?

  • Community Services for children with a disability have been identified as the initial priority area, including public, private and voluntary healthcare settings.
  • SNAs may also be asked to provide remote supports to families of children who they are familiar with, including scheduled calls or video links with advice on routines, home schooling, behaviour management and social stories on Covid-19.

The three trending queries that members of the Leadership Support Team have been processing in relation to DES Circular 27/2020 include:

  1. Does DES Circular 27/2020 apply to ancillary staff?
    No. Caretakers, secretaries and cleaners are employees of the Board of Management and are not recognised as public servant employees.
  2. Does the circular apply to all SNAs?
    All SNAs are available for temporary assignment. This includes those SNAs who are currently providing support to families as that will now be managed on a structured basis through the temporary assignment process.

  3. Does the circular apply to teachers?
    No teacher should be nominated as all class teachers and Special Education support teachers are required to support pupils and other teachers when required. This is not a volunteer portal it is a reassignment portal.

  4. Are all SNAs required to complete the online questionnaire?
    Yes. All SNAs are to be nominated for temporary assignment and may be called for assignment subject to the terms of Circular 0024/2020.

IPPN have been in contact with the management bodies regarding the execution of the circular relating to the new short-term reassignment of SNAs. CPSMA have issued guidance to their schools which includes a template email to be sent to SNAs by boards.. They have agreed with its circulation to IPPN members. If you as principal are issuing the template to your SNAs, you are doing it in your capacity as Secretary to the Board, as the Board is the employer. When the SNA completes the questionnaire, they can indicate if they have any underlying conditions etc. 

Click here to view DES Press Release

Click here to view DES Circular

Click here to view CPSMA guidance note and SNA template email

Click here to view DES FAQs (2 April 2020)





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