Advice for Madressas and faith based learning classes has been announced.

Hundreds of children attend evening madressa classes across the region. Many mosques and private madressas have already annnounced they would close for the duration of the lockdown. They are likely to remain shut and run online classes.

New government advice announced this afternoon now states, "Providers who run community activities, holiday clubs, breakfast and after-school clubs, tuition and other out-of-school provision for children can now operate with protective measures in place, see the protective measures guidance. 

It adds, "Providing they are only operating in premises legally able to open, children are able to attend settings such as: tuition and learning centres; extracurricular clubs (for example, dance classes, gymnastics training, football coaching); uniformed youth organisations (for example, Scouts, Guides and cadet forces); supplementary schools; private language schools; religious settings offering education (for example madrassahs, yeshivas, Sunday schools).

"However, if you live in an area that is experiencing a local coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, different local restrictions may have been imposed."

It is unsure if any other restrictions are in place locally as all of England will be under the same rules and regulations for the coming month.

The Lancashire Council of Mosques (LCM) had looked to clarify advice over the opening of the madressas. It had joined other organisations to call for an urgent review of new lockdown restrictions on places of worship.

A statement today read, "Government guidance has been published yesterday regarding educational settings and childcare in the context of the national lockdown. LCM has consulted with Public Health (PH) on how this guidance relates to Madrasahs. PH strongly recommends that all Madrasahs should move to online provision for the next month in order to help reduce the high infection rate in the area by minimising contact with other people for the duration of the national restrictions.

"If individual Madrasahs believe they meet the criteria to remain open because they are supporting childcare for working parents or parents engaged in education or training then they must do so in a covid safe & secure way. Madrasahs that plan to operate should consider whether they are going to be primarily used for those essential reasons outlined in the guidance. If not, then they should cease operating face-to-face provision for the lockdown period but can offer remote education. In essence, Maktabs and Madrasahs can stay open if they meet the conditions mentioned."

Mosques will not be permitted to host congregational prayers and there will be no Jummah (Friday) prayers at mosques.

The new restrictions indicate that places of worship in England must close for congregational worship but can remain open for ‘individual prayer’. Funeral prayers can be held in Mosques up to a maximum of 30 attendees.