BEAMA member guidance - Critical workers and schools in Lockdown

06 January 2021

As you will all be aware we are now in a new lockdown for at least the next 6 weeks. BEAMA has sought guidance from Government on the critical worker status of employees of member companies, and these critical worker’s children continuing to attend school

. Below is a summary of advice given, and although this is not 100% clear it does, in BEAMA’s view, allow member company employees to make the case that their children are from a critical worker family and therefore can continue to attend school. The letter attached can be used to conform the nature of the employees employment.

  1. Manufacturing and Construction should remain open

  • Where people cannot work from home - including, but not limited to, people who work in critical national infrastructure, construction, or manufacturing - they should continue to travel to their workplace. This is essential to keeping the country operating and supporting sectors and employers.
  • Work - you can only leave home for work purposes where it is unreasonable for you to do your job from home, including but not limited to people who work within critical national infrastructure, construction or manufacturing that require in-person attendance
  • You may leave your local area for a legally permitted reason, such as for work.
  • You are allowed to stay overnight away from your home if you require accommodation for work purposes

In addition the Scottish Government have clearly said Manufacturing can stay open.


  1. Children of Critical workers and school attendance

BEIS have on our behalf raised this with the Department for Education. It seems that the advice has not changed from the first lockdown in March 2020, and DfE have noted that that critical workers in manufacturing could be included in the supply chain of existing definitions. When this occurred in March  the advice was that individuals should make the case to the school and show linkage to the broad terms in the DfE announcement.  The DfE do not appear to be opposed to letters being issued to key workers in these categories if they need school provision to attend work.

BEAMA advises that employees with school age children use the download letter, along with company information in discussions with their children’s schools.