European Foundation
for the Improvement of
Living and Working Conditions

The tripartite EU agency providing knowledge to assist
in the development of better social, employment and
work-related policies

COVID-19 EU PolicyWatch

Database of national-level responses

Eurofound's COVID-19 EU PolicyWatch collates information on the responses of government and social partners to the crisis, as well as gathering examples of company practices aimed at mitigating the social and economic impacts.

Factsheet for case NO-2020-11/757 – measures in Norway

Schools and kindergartens open to personnel in critical society functions

Skoler og barnehage åpen for personell innen kritiske samfunnsfunksjoner

Country Norway , applies nationwide
Time period Temporary, 13 March 2020 – 27 April 2020
Type Legislations or other statutory regulations
Category Ensuring business continuity and support for essential services
– Mobilisation of a larger workforce
Author Aasmund Arup Seip, FAFO and Eurofound
Case created 21 April 2020 (updated 05 May 2020)

Background information

To maintain operations in the health and care services and other critical society functions during the Covid-19 pandemic, the Norwegian Directorate of Health made exceptions to the closure order of kindergartens and educational institutions. Managers of childcare centres and headteachers in primary schools were required to provide a service for children of healthcare personnel, personnel in the transport sector or within other critical society functions. Parts of the kindergarten and school services has thus been open to keep personnel critical to society in service.

Content of measure

In order to stop the spread of COVID-19 and to contribute to the maintenance of necessary health and care services, the Norwegian Directorate of Health has issued, according to the Infection Control Act, a decision to close schools and other educational institutions with effect from 16 Mars 2020. However, to maintain operations in the health and care services and other critical society functions, and to avoid the use of people in risk groups for babysitting, the Norwegian Directorate of Health made exceptions to the closure order. Managers of childcare centres and headteachers in primary schools were required to provide a service for children of healthcare personnel, personnel in the transport sector or within other critical society functions. The same applies to children with special care needs that cannot be taken care of when childcare, school or other day care facilities are closed.

The emergency response committee considers the following 15 functions to be critical to society: Government and crisis management; Defence; Law and order; Health and care services; Rescue services; IT security in the civilian sector; Nature and environment; Security of supply; Water and wastewater; Financial services; Power supply; Electronic communication services; Transport; Satellite-based services; Pharmacies.

Use of measure

No information to date.

Target groups

Workers Businesses Citizens
Particular professions
Does not apply to businesses Does not apply to citizens

Actors and funding

Actors Funding
National government
No special funding required

Social partners

Social partners' role in designing the measure and form of involvement:

Trade unions Employers' organisations
Role Consulted Consulted
Form Direct consultation outside a formal body Direct consultation outside a formal body

Social partners' role in the implementation, monitoring and assessment phase:

  • N/A
  • Main level of involvement: Unknown

Involvement

N/A

Views and reactions

Social partners have been consulted regularly during design and implementation of the measure.

Sectors and occupations

    • Economic area Sector (NACE level 2)
      D - Electricity, Gas, Steam And Air Conditioning Supply D35 Electricity, gas, steam and air conditioning supply
      H - Transportation And Storage H49 Land transport and transport via pipelines
      H50 Water transport
      H51 Air transport
      H53 Postal and courier activities
      J - Information And Communication J61 Telecommunications
      J62 Computer programming, consultancy and related activities
      J63 Information service activities
      K - Financial And Insurance Activities K64 Financial service activities, except insurance and pension funding
      K65 Insurance, reinsurance and pension funding, except compulsory social security
      K66 Activities auxiliary to financial services and insurance activities
      O - Public Administration And Defence; Compulsory Social Security O84 Public administration and defence; compulsory social security
      Q - Human Health And Social Work Activities Q86 Human health activities
      Q87 Residential care activities
      Q88 Social work activities without accommodation

This case is not occupation-specific.

Sources

  • 13 March 2020: The Norwegian Directorate of Health has issued a decision to close schools and other educational institutions (www.helsedirektoratet.no)

Citation

Eurofound (2020), Schools and kindergartens open to personnel in critical society functions, case NO-2020-11/757 (measures in Norway), COVID-19 EU PolicyWatch, Dublin, http://eurofound.link/covid19eupolicywatch

Disclaimer: This information has not been subject to the full Eurofound evaluation, editorial and publication process. All information is preliminary and subject to change.