School reopening arrangements for January 2021: impact assessment

Considers the impact of the extended school holiday period by a week, and the introduction of remote learning from January 2021 in light of COVID-19 on children and young people, parents and carers, and the education workforce.


It has been recognised throughout the pandemic that COVID-19 will have had a negative impact on many children and young people, staff and families across Scotland, particularly groups with protected characteristics and those experiencing disadvantage. We know that school provides, amongst many other things, opportunities, support and safety for Scotland's children and young people, and it is acknowledged that schools are less able to provide this range of services with remote learning in place for the majority of pupils.

It is widely recognised that remote learning for most is not a preferred long-term approach to educating and supporting children and young people as they develop. For this reason, the government has made clear its intention to prioritise the reopening of schools for some or all pupils as soon as the science indicates that it is safe to do so.

As we progress through remote learning, and move towards the reopening of schools for more pupils, the findings in this document support the view that there should be an appropriate focus on recovery and support, with recognition that the impacts of the pandemic will be felt into the future.



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