Schools and childcare settings
When will schools reopen?
We are planning for a full-time return to school in August on the condition that infection rates are sufficiently low to continue to suppress the virus and public health and testing systems are in place.
The Education Recovery Group, which brings together the Scottish Government, councils, teachers’ representatives, parent bodies and trades unions, will continue to work together over the summer to ensure that plans are developed collaboratively for a safe and smooth transition back to school for all children and young people in August.
We continue to plan for the start date of the new term to be 11 August. It is practical and sensible for schools to hold in-service days at the start of term to prepare for the return of children to school, particularly this year when children and young people have been away from school for so long. We will agree with local authorities a clear date by which we expect any such in-service days to have been completed, and all children welcomed back into schools.
When will a final decision be made on whether schools will return on 11 August?
We have undertaken to make that decision no later than 30 July. Detailed guidance is being developed to help schools and local authorities prepare for the return to school.
Which ages/year groups will be prioritised?
All pupils will be part of the return to school from August.
How many pupils will there be per class?
The number of pupils per class will depend on the size of individual classrooms and requirements for physical distancing. Schools will provide parents with information ahead of a return to the classroom in August.
How will vulnerable children be supported going forward? Will there be increased mental health support, IT provision, etc?
Schools are a lifeline for our vulnerable children, as they have been throughout this pandemic. Through the Education Recovery Group (ERG), we will support schools to continue to provide high-quality education and support for the emotional and social wellbeing of all pupils, which is so important as we adapt to a different way of working.
Because digital learning will be key to getting children back learning, we’re spending £30 million on measures to pupils online: what is often called ‘digital inclusion’. As part of that, we’re investing £9 million in 25,000 free laptops or tablets – with internet access – for disadvantaged children to help their learning outside school.
When will nurseries, early learning and childcare reopen?
The childcare sector can re-open from 15 July. Critical childcare continues for key workers and vulnerable children.
What about out of school care, will that restart when schools return?
The childcare sector can fully re-open from 15 July, this includes school age childcare services
Will hub schools be expanded?
Hub provision will remain in place at the moment and run for key workers over the summer, and local authorities continue to make provisions based on needs.