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Coronavirus and additional support for learning


How coronavirus is affecting additional support for learning in Scotland

We created this section on our website to help you keep track of how the latest Scottish Government coronavirus guidance may affect additional support for learning. We keep it updated as things change so it is a good idea to check back regularly.

The five months of lockdown have been challenging for all parents and carers and for children and young people themselves. While schools and nurseries were closed, parents and teachers continued to educate children and young people at home. For some families, this was a positive experience, but for many it has been difficult and stressful, particularly when their children need extra support with their learning that is more difficult to provide at a distance or online.

All pupils should now have returned to school, if they are well enough to do so. Some schools may have initially used a phased return for the first week, but by 18 August all pupils were expected to be back to school full-time, unless they have been advised not to attend for medical reasons.

Although a lot of parents and carers and their children will be pleased to be back at school, many will have some questions and concerns. We have:

  • tried to answer what we think will be the main questions and concerns about attending school and nursery during coronavirus
  • explained some changes to the law on additional support for learning
  • explained the guidance about exams and qualifications for the 2019/20 school year.

If you have a question that we have not answered in the sections below, or if you have other concerns about your child’s additional support for learning, please get in touch with our helpline. We will listen to your concerns and do our best to answer any questions you may have.

You can also keep up to date with latest developments on Twitter and Facebook.

Our website for children and young people, Reach, has lots of information and advice for your child about their learning and support during coronavirus which is also updated regularly.

In this section, we will answer questions about health and safety, and the support your child should now be getting from their school or nursery. Our answers are all based on Scottish Government guidance.

If you have a question that we have not answered in the sections below, or if you have other concerns about returning to school or nursery, please get in touch with our helpline. We will listen to your concerns and do our best to answer any questions you may have.

During lockdown, some changes were made to timescales for responding to placing requests and the way that education appeal committees and the Additional Support Needs Tribunal operate. This section summarises these changes.

If coronavirus cases start to rise again in Scotland, or if your child or someone they come into contact with develops coronavirus symptoms, this may impact on your child’s education.

In this section we’ll explain what might happen in these situations and what this will mean for your child’s learning and support.

In this section we have summarised some of the key information about exams and qualifications and how these have been affected by coronavirus.

In this section we will explain how you can continue to work together with your child’s school or nursery while there are still some restrictions in place due to coronavirus, including changes to how meetings about your child’s support might happen.

All schools are expected to now be open again with all pupils who can attending full time. Measures will be in place in schools and nurseries to try and keep pupils and staff safe from coronavirus. Details of how this is working in your area will be decided by your local authority and school. This is because different areas and schools will have different things to consider, including the size and layout of each school and how pupils travel to and from school.

Schools and local authorities should be doing their best to update parents on local developments and plans for your child’s education and support. It may be helpful to start by looking at your local authority’s website for updates if you are not sure what is happening in your area. If your child’s school has a website or newsletter it may be helpful to check these too. If you are not able to find the information you are looking for, get in touch with the school.


  • Thanks for your feedback. It helps us to know the information parents are looking for about additional support for learning.

Contact the Enquire Helpline on 0345 123 2303

Our telephone helpline is open 1pm-4.30pm, Monday to Friday. Visit our Contact page to get in touch by email.

Resources/Advice for Young People/

Our service Reach has bitesize, easy read advice to help you talk to your child about their learning and support during coronavirus.

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