Statement on re-opening of schools in Scotland

Deputy First Minister John Swinney updates Scottish Parliament, and reaction from Voice Scotland, plus further updates (30 July 2020)

Commenting on the statement by Deputy First Minister John Swinney about the re-opening of schools in Scotland in August, Dougie Atkinson, Voice's Senior Professional Officer (Scotland), said:

“We cautiously welcome the proposal to have Scottish schools returning full time in August.  However, it has to be done with the safety of pupils and staff as the priority.

"As glad as we are that virus levels are diminishing, we are running out of planning and preparation time before schools are due to break up for the summer.  Teachers and school management teams will have to achieve miracles if this plan is to be delivered in time.

"Voice urges local authorities to provide schools with as much support as they can to help them to return to a post-COVID normality. It is only then that the challenge of making up for lost ground can begin.”

Further information

Re-opening of schools
Deputy First Minister John Swinney updates Parliament on plans to reopen schools, 23 June 2020

Earlier Voice statement and updates: Reopening schools, early learning and childcare provision in Scotland

Updates: 25 June 2020

Education Recovery Group
Group continues work to develop plans for full reopening of schools.

Return to full-time schooling

Skills Academy

Update: 2 July 2020:

COVID-19 Advisory Group: physical distancing advice: Advice commissioned by the First Minister and Chief Medical Officer on 2 metre distancing.
6. Are there any particular issues to consider in relation to schools and physical distancing? And is there evidence from other countries that could support alternative approaches?
With regards to distancing among children in schools, the evidence suggests that there is little difference in the risk of virus transmission between 1m and 2m distancing, however 2m distancing carries with it an emotional and logistical cost. Maintaining a 2m distancing in schools severely restricts the number of children who can be taught at any one time. The adverse effects of lack of schooling on children has been highlighted by many education experts. Similar arguments apply to further and higher education. It should be noted that there is broad consensus in the group that 2m distancing in schools will not be necessary should the situation remain as it is currently. The group supports the work and approach to developing advice being taken in the Subgroup on Education and Children’s Issues. Mitigation measures should remain in place for adults present in school, and the importance of hand hygiene and surface cleaning should be reinforced to both children and adults.

Update 9 July 2020:

Letter from Scottish Parliament Education and Skills Committee to Education Recovery Group (pdf)

Update: 14 July 2020:


Updates: 16 July 2020:

Planning for re-opening schools safely
Advice on physical distancing and school transport published.

Coronavirus (COVID 19): Advisory Sub-Group on Education and Children’s Issues – advisory note on physical distancing in schools
Advisory note from the Coronavirus (COVID 19): Advisory Sub-Group on Education and Children’s Issues about physical distancing in schools.


Coronavirus (COVID 19): Advisory Sub-Group on Education and Children’s Issues – advisory note on school transport
Advisory note from the Coronavirus (COVID 19): Advisory Sub-Group on Education and Children’s Issues about school transport.

Updates: 30 July 2020:

Updates: 30 July 2020

Phase 3 continues with further indicative re-opening dates
Full-time school reopening confirmed with further £60m support.

Coronavirus (COVID-19): support to childcare sector
Guidance on the daycare services for children in light of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

Coronavirus (COVID-19): guidance on reopening early learning and childcare services
Non-statutory guidance for early learning and childcare (ELC) providers in the local authority, private and third sectors to support a safe reopening of these settings during Phase 3

Coronavirus (COVID 19): Advisory Sub-Group on Education and Children’s Issues – advisory note on physical distancing in early learning and childcare settings (ELC)
Advisory note from the Coronavirus (COVID 19): Advisory Sub-Group on Education and Children’s Issues about physical distancing in early learning and childcare settings (ELC).

COVID-19 – Framework for Decision Making: Scotland's route map through and out of the crisis Phase 3 Update – 30th July 2020
This publication provides an update to Scotland's Route Map, setting out further phase 3 changes, including the full and safe re-opening of schools.

Children's rights and wellbeing impact assessment: The closure and reopening of schools as part of the COVID-19 recovery process in Scotland
This impact assessment considers the impacts to children’s rights and wellbeing as a result of the closure of schools due to COVID-19, the plan to reopen schools full-time from August 2020, and the associated contingency of a blended learning model.

Coronavirus (COVID-19): Guidance on preparing for the start of the new school term in August 2020
This guidance has been developed to support a safe return to school for all children, young people and staff taking full account of progress made in suppressing COVID-19 in Scotland, the scientific advice received and the advice of the Education Recovery Group and other key stakeholders.

Coronavirus (COVID-19): support for continuity in learning
Guidance to help local authorities, early learning centres and schools continue to support children and young people's learning during the coronavirus outbreak.

Children's rights and wellbeing impact assessment: The closure and reopening of schools as part of the COVID-19 recovery process in Scotland
This impact assessment considers the impacts to children’s rights and wellbeing as a result of the closure of schools due to COVID-19, the plan to reopen schools full-time from August 2020, and the associated contingency of a blended learning model.

Funding follows the child and the national standard for early learning and childcare providers: interim guidance

Coronavirus (COVID-19): fully outdoor childcare providers guidance

Letter from John Swinney: Coronavirus (COVID-19): Guidance on preparing for the start of the new school term in August 2020 (pdf)

 

 


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