1. In making these assessments, Scottish Ministers have access to expertise from a range of professional advisers and expert groups, both within and beyond the Scottish Government. These include, within government, the Chief Medical Officer (CMO), the Chief Social Policy Adviser and the Chief Economic Adviser. In addition, Ministers’ judgments are informed by advice and oversight from other professional advisers including the National Clinical Director, Chief Scientific Adviser, Chief Nursing Officer, Chief Statistician, and the Solicitor to the Scottish Government.
Beyond the Scottish Government, Ministers have access to the CMO’s Advisory Group on the epidemiology and public health impacts of the virus, and to expert advisory groups as part of the Four Nations response to COVID-19, including the Scientific Advisory Group on Emergencies (SAGE). We also have expert advisory groups in fields such as the economy and education that we are able to draw upon. The Equality and Human Rights Commission has offered to contribute its services, resources, expertise and knowledge, both in the immediate response to COVID-19 and in considering the wider socio-economic recovery.
2. Also referred to as Test and Protect
3. The Scottish Government published the ‘Coronavirus (COVID-19): test, trace, isolate, support strategy’ on May 4th 2020. That document sets out our plans to help disrupt community transmission of the virus.
4. I.e. some time spent in schools (along with their peers) and the balance of time (when their peers would be at home) in appropriate childcare provision.
5. Evidence currently suggests that it will be safer for younger groups of children (ELC and primary) to move towards full-time in-school learning more quickly than young people of secondary school age. This would also needs to be balanced against what the evidence tells us about the safety of staff.
6. Under section 27 of the 1995 Act, local authorities are required to provide day care for children who are in need and have powers to provide day care for those who are not in need. “In need” is defined by section 93(4) of the 1995 Act.
7. Section 47(1) of the Children and Young People (Scotland) Act 2014 states that the education authority must ‘secure that the mandatory amount of early learning and childcare is made available for each eligible pre-school child belonging to its area.’ This mandatory amount is defined in section 48(1) as 600 hours a year.