Since schools closed last month, a significant amount of positive work has been undertaken by a wide range of professionals to help support continuity in children and young people's learning.
Local authorities, schools, teachers and practitioners have shown extraordinary dedication and professionalism in adapting and making decisions in the best interests of the children and young people whom they know best.
Their knowledge of their communities has been invaluable to date in responding to the coronavirus outbreak and will be vital in ensuring continuity of learning, wherever possible, in the coming weeks and months.
Given the unprecedented circumstances we face, we cannot predict with any certainty when schools in Scotland will reopen. However, it is clear that, for the vast majority of pupils, at least the start of Term 4 will be experienced from home. Decisions as to the duration and combination of coronavirus related restrictions will be subject to regular review.
Our starting point is a clear understanding that schools are closed but learning continues: we all have a role to play in supporting learners. There is no expectation that the kind of learning approaches and experiences provided in schools will be replicated at home while schools are closed during Term 4. The primary focus of our education system, working closely with a range of public and third sector partners, remains to ensure that pupils, teachers, practitioners, parents and carers are supported to cope with the challenging circumstances in which we all find ourselves in.
Education Scotland has changed how it is working to provide tailored support to local authorities, schools, children and young people in response to the closure of schools during the Covid-19 pandemic. This collective approach, drawing on the wide-ranging skills and expertise available in the agency, allows Education Scotland to provide national advice and support. This will have greatest effect when done in close partnership with school and local authorities.
This document, prepared by the Scottish Government and Education Scotland, with helpful advice and input from COSLA, Solace, ADES and professional associations, gives an overview of the shared expectations at a national and local level of what we will all do to support children and young people in Scotland. It outlines how we will ensure that learning continues for children and young people during Term 4.
The document sets out some of the measures in place, and being developed, to support:
- learning at home;
- parental and carer involvement and engagement; and
- teachers, practitioners and school leaders.