We know that for some children and young people, learning at home has provided positive benefits and experiences for them and their learning during the closures of early learning and childcare centres and schools.
However, for many children and young people, their experiences have been less positive, and in some cases there have been significant concerns for their wellbeing. Some children and young people may also have developed needs not apparent prior to lockdown, which may require new responses and approaches.
The getting it right for every child (GIRFEC) approach, continues to provide a robust methodology when considering the holistic needs of children and young people engaging with blended learning approaches in school and at home. The Education (Additional Support for Learning) (Scotland) Act 2004, guidance on inclusive approaches to teaching and learning and strategies developed to close the attainment gap, enable tailored support and provision to be provided for children and young people as they return to school.
This guidance offers high-level advice to local authorities and their partners as they consider the support required to address the impact of interrupted learning and disconnection from school or early learning and childcare for many children and young people.
It focuses on the support required, through a range of themes, for children and young people, parents, carers and practitioners. It complements the advice and information provided by the Coronavirus (COVID-19): guidance on reducing the risks in schools, and recognises the human rights of children, young people and adults concerned and is aligned to getting it right for every child and additional support for learning legislation.
We know this continues to be a challenging situation for all school staff. Strong relationships between parents and the range of professionals who know and care about their children and young people will be even more important in reconnecting with school. By continued partnership working with parents and carers, children and young people and partners, we can make sure that children and young people’s return to school is successful and their remaining time learning at home continues to be well supported. This guidance, therefore, also focuses on engagement and communication with parents and carers.
The guidance draws together a number of strands and is structured thematically. It considers a range of factors in turn. It begins with health and wellbeing considerations, then focuses on other areas where children, young people and their parents and carers may need support and in some cases, advice specific to the individual child or young person. It also covers transitions, resources and support.