DfE Covid-19 Recovery Programme – Expert & Mentor Recruitment 2024

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Sep 28 2023

Please see message from DfE regarding the Education Covid Recovery Programme which aims to address the severe impact the pandemic had on our youngest children.

Dear Local Authority Colleague,

We have started a recruitment drive to attract additional Experts and Mentors for the remaining two terms of the Programme.  Some of our most successful Experts and Mentors have been recruited from our Local Authority colleagues and so we are getting in touch to see if this is of interest to you.

Since September 2022, The Early Years Experts and Mentors participating in the Department for Education Covid Recovery Programme have been supporting both early years practitioners and leaders to address the severe impact the pandemic had on our youngest children.

With a mixture of face-to-face, virtual support and access to new online child development training, feedback for the programme has been overwhelmingly positive.

The programme is continuing to run for two further terms, and we are getting in touch to offer you the opportunity to apply for a role within the programme in 2024 (Spring and Summer Terms).

Available roles

 We are recruiting experienced early years professionals to take part in the programme in the roles of Experts and Mentors.

The roles will focus on supporting settings to help children recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, including narrowing the gap between disadvantaged children and others.

 Skills we’re looking for

Applicants must have:

  • at least 3 years’ experience in early education and if working in an early years setting, it must be Ofsted rated ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ (or equivalent independent school inspection rating)
  • a level 6 or above early years qualification

Applicants may be working in:

  • schools
  • nursery schools
  • private, voluntary, or independent (PVI) nurseries
  • other early years settings
  • early years roles within local authorities, universities, or similar organisations

 How to apply for a role in the programme

To apply for a role, complete the expression of interest (EOI) form and outline your relevant skills and experience.

The EOI document provides details of the responsibilities and activities you will undertake in your role, and the time required for the role.

Expression of interest (EOI) application form


Submit your expression of interest form to us at  by Friday 6th October 2023.

Interviews will take place in October and applicants must be available to attend a 1-hour online orientation training session followed by two face to face training days that will be held in November 2023.


The DfE is providing funding of up to £500 per day for this work as an Expert and £400 per day as a Mentor, this includes any travel and subsistence costs incurred.

Funding for this programme is paid in the form of a grant to a registered setting. We cannot pay individuals directly. Your employer must agree to you applying to become a mentor or expert. If you are successful, we will issue a grant offer letter to your employer which they need to complete, sign and return to DfE. Claims will be verified and subject to a grant assurance process.

I have attached the Expression of interest form for both roles:  EOI_Expert     EOI_Mentor

Thank you for your support to the programme.

Kind regards,



Early Years Covid Recovery

Practitioner and Whole Setting Support Project

Telephone: 01536 443435        


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