Notice - Coronavirus Act 2020 Temporary Modification of Education Duties (No. 28) Notice (Northern Ireland) 2021

Date published: 22 March 2021

The Department of Education has exercised the power provided under section 38(3)(c) and paragraph 17(1), (2)(a)(ii), (4) and (7) of Schedule 17 to the Coronavirus Act 2020 to issue a Notice to temporarily modify Article 58 (1)(a) and (5)(a) of the Education and Libraries (NI) Order 1986.  Notice No. 28 will last for a period of 18 days from 9 March 2021, unless the Department issues a cancellation notice before the end of that period.


As part of the Northern Ireland Executive’s measures to reduce the current rising incidence or transmission of coronavirus the Minister of Education announced on that there will be a phased return of pupils to school.  Special schools will open as normal and vulnerable children and pupils of key workers will have access to schools for supervised learning. 

Notice No. 28 makes modifications to Article 58(1)(a) and (5)(a) of the Education and Libraries (NI) Order 1986. The modifications are necessary to enable the Education Authority (EA) to make direct payments in lieu of free school meals to families of entitled pupils who are required to learn remotely from home due to the new Coronavirus restrictions. School meals services will be provided as normal in schools where pupils are required to attend and food provision will be made on humanitarian grounds where a pupil presents hungry at school.

Under paragraph 17 of Schedule 17 of the Coronavirus Act 2020 the Department is required to publish the notice and to take steps as the Department considers reasonable to bring the notice to the attention of those likely to be affected by it.

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