Service changes in response to local lockdown:
The Education Service continues to prepare for the re-opening of school buildings this week (commencing August 10). The risk assessment process and national guidance has helped staff teams put in place a range of measures to support a safe return for children, young people and staff. We look forward to welcoming groups of children for orientation visits next week.
The First Minister announced the intention to open schools full-time in August subject to appropriate mitigations being in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19. As always we are being guided by the Scottish Government in our approach to re-opening our schools and health surveillance arrangements are in place to monitor how the opening of school buildings impacts on the R number.
The Scottish Government guidance on the re-opening of school buildings was published on 30th July and is based on the scientific information published on the 16th July. We welcome the publication of national guidance information and have reveiwed the content to will be reviewed the content to support our planning.
We plan to send a communication to parents on 3August to clarify the range of mitigations in place to support a safe return to school buildings.
In the meantime, we have extended the emergency childcare service until Friday 7 August to assist families who still require this provision.
More information can be found below in our Frequently Asked Questions.
School specific information will be issued directly by schools to parents and carers as soon as it is available.
Online learning support
An online learning support hub has been set up with different portals for pupils, parents/guardians and teachers. Pupils will be able to access the curriculum.
Pupils with no broadband access at home will be given a laptop along with a wifi connection device. Schools are organising provision for affected pupils, which is being made possible thanks to support from BT.
Free school meals
Supermarket vouchers are to be given to parents or guardians of pupils eligible for free school meals so they do not have to make a journey into schools during the period of school building closures.
The scheme will mean vouchers to the value of £25 for each child will be issued for a 10-day period, the value per day being higher than the current price of a school meal. Vouchers will be issued fortnightly, also covering the summer holiday period.
Vouchers will be emailed to parents or guardians who have provided an email address to their school and by text message where only a mobile telephone number is held. Any eligible parents or guardians who do not have access to email or a mobile phone should phone the Virtual School Helpline for help on 01224 523322.
The provision of free school meal vouchers will cease on August 14th with an on-site meals service resuming in schools on the 17th August.
During the current Coronavirus (COVID-19) School Closures, parents/carers of P1 to P3 pupils who are in receipt of the qualifying benefits for free school meals are requested to apply for free school meals in order to receive meal vouchers. When schools return, all P1 to P3 pupils will resume their automatic entitlement.
A school helpline has been established to support children and families in need of assistance. The number is 01224 523322 and is available from 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday.