Publication - Advice and guidance

Coronavirus (COVID-19): early learning and childcare services

Non-statutory guidance to support the continued safe operation of ELC settings.

Coronavirus (COVID-19): early learning and childcare services
Specialist visitors to the setting

Specialist visitors to the setting

The advice for specialist visitors is specific to protection level. Specialist visitors include allied health professionals, local authority quality improvement officers, Education Scotland and Care Inspectorate inspectors and improvement advisors, and specialist coaches and instructors, and other bodies to delivering their legal duties to the setting.:

Table 6: visits to the setting by specialist staff

Level 0 and below

Level 1

Level 2

Level 3

Level 4/Stay local

No restrictions on visits by specialist staff

Visits by any specialist staff can take place where it supports the health, wellbeing, care or development of children.


Visits by any specialist staff should take place only where it is demonstrably necessary to support of the health and wellbeing of children (for example in relation to child protection issues or addressing additional support needs) and it is not possible to provide this support remotely.

Specialist visitors should not attend more than one setting in the same day.


Telephone calls, online meetings and ‘virtual’ visits should be the norm for regular and other meetings with specialists.

Visits should take place outdoors wherever possible.

Tradespeople can visit to carry out essential repairs or maintenance to support safe or effective running of the setting or to support future capacity building. They should remain physically distanced from staff and children.

Visits by specialist staff and tradespeople should be included in the setting’s risk assessment.

Specialist visitors should maintain appropriate physical distance from staff in the setting.

If the visit takes place indoors, ensure that the physical distancing requirements can be strictly adhered to, the meeting space is well ventilated, face coverings are worn and that there is a supply of alcohol based hand rub available to visitors at the entrance to the setting.

Visits should be with the permission of the manager or head teacher.

Where practicable, specialist visitors should look to reduce the number of settings visited and to limit their contact time with children. They should also be encouraged to take regular lateral flow tests.

Lead-in time for adapting to change in protection level: as soon as protection level changes

First published: 11 Aug 2021 Last updated: 11 Oct 2021 -