COVID-19 and organised classes for children: FOI release

Information request and response under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002

Information requested

Question 1 - any evidence or investigation undertaken pertaining to the risk assessment or relative infection rates and spread of Covid-19 in the following settings overall and by age breakdown if available;
1. Indoor classes for children
2. Hospitality settings
3. Nursery schools
4. Supermarkets
5. Parks and recreational areas

Question 2 - information relating to any evidence that shows relative effectiveness of Covid-19 infection control measures in all of the above settings.

Question 3 - any evidence to back the decision to limit indoor classes for children and how any evidence demonstrates that indoor classes for children are at higher risk than in any of the other settings.

Question 4 - to request information relating to any measures in place or being considered to support private, small business, sole trader or franchisees who run baby classes in Scotland, including but not limited to Daisy Foundation, Music Makers & Shakers and Baby Sensory (Wow Group). 


While our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance the Scottish Government does not have some of the information you have requested. This is because the information is only available at a more general level than you have requested.

Under section 25(1) of FOISA, we do not have to give you information which is already reasonably accessible to you. If, however, you do not have internet access to obtain this information from the website(s) listed, then please contact me again and I will send you a paper copy.

We believe this responds to your points in question 2 of your request. This sets out a range of guidance, including the different measures each sector needs to take to keep their customers and workforce safe and control the virus in each setting, based on the most recent scientific guidance and Ministerial considerations.

We believe this responds to your points in question 3 of your request. This sets out the advice from the Advisory Sub Group on Education and Children’s issues, including their advice on the relative risk of indoor versus outdoor activities.

We believe this responds to the points raised in question 4 of your request. This guidance sets out the support that is available to business, including private, small business, sole trader or franchisees.

We believe that some of the points you raised in question 1 are partially answered in our response to question 3 (points 1 and 3). Other relevant information can be found here

Decisions on what sectors and activities to re-open on our route out of lockdown are guided by the principles set out in our Framework for Decision Making. Proposals are technically assessed using the best available evidence and analysis of their potential benefits and harms to health, the economy, and broader society to minimise overall harm and ensure transmission of the virus continues to be suppressed. This assessment process includes oversight of the assessed health risks in different settings by the Chief Medical Officer and input from the other Chief Clinicians as appropriate.

It is not possible to publish scientific evidence specifically on tourism & hospitality as in general neither the Scottish Government, the Chief Medical Officer's Advisory Group or SAGE have produced evidence papers on a sectoral basis. Instead we have used scientific evidence on transmission coupled with the social and economic benefits of tourism and hospitality which Ministers have used to make decisions.

This is a formal notice under section 17(1) of FOISA that the Scottish Government does not have the information you have requested in relation hospitality settings or parks and recreation areas. 

The Scottish Government is currently preparing to publish this information in due course.

About FOI

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Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
Regent Road

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