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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.

While things may look a bit different during coronavirus, schools should still be supporting their pupils with additional support needs during term time. In this section of our website we have:

  • tried to answer some of the main questions and concerns families have been raising with us about their child’s education and support during coronavirus
  • explained how schools should be supporting their pupils while reducing the risks of coronavirus
  • explained the changes to exams, course assessments and appeals.

The Scottish Government previously set out 5 coronavirus protection levels (0 – 4) that can be used nationally or locally, depending on the prevalence of the virus across Scotland. Since 9th August Scotland has moved beyond Level 0.

For the moment, schools have been asked to keep most of the coronavirus measures that have been in place since the start of this school year. For example, high school pupils are still expected to wear face coverings when in school. This is being kept under regular review and any future changes will depend on the latest data and evidence at the time. We will keep these pages of our website updated as things change, so it is a good idea to check back regularly.

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 the 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 be getting when they are attending 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 attending 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 coronavirus, 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. Our factsheets have now all been updated to reflect these changes.

In this section we have summarised some of the key information about exams and course assessments in 2020/21, and what the plans currently are for 2021/22 exams.

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 children and young people should now be back to attending school. However, there may still be some situations when your child may need to learn remotely from home due to coronavirus. For example, if they need to self-isolate after developing coronavirus symptoms or if the school needs to temporarily close again due to a national or local increase in coronavirus.

If your child needs to learn remotely from home they still have a right to an education, and to get additional support with their learning if they need it. In this section we will explain what your child’s school should be doing to support your child to continue with their education while they can’t be in school, how they should plan for when your child can return, and where you and your child can find some support during this time.

Coronavirus has had a big impact on the lives of all children and young people, including their learning. Some pupils will have found learning at home, and returning to school, easier than others. Schools are aware of this, and they should be working to understand where your child is at with their learning, what help they need, and offering them that support.

If you are worried your child still needs more or different support to help them with this, you can speak to the school. For more information about how to do this, see our coronavirus webpage on Working together with your child’s school or nursery during coronavirus.

The Scottish Government previously set out 5 coronavirus protection levels (0 – 4) that can be used nationally or locally, depending on the prevalence of the virus across Scotland. If there is an increase in coronavirus, either nationally or locally, there is a chance parts of Scotland may go into higher levels again. However, from 9th August Scotland will move beyond Level 0.

You can find out what level your local area is in on the Scottish Government website below.

Your child’s education and support for learning may be affected in different ways, depending on what the coronavirus protection level is in your local area. Local authorities will have different plans and measures in place for keeping their pupils and staff safe, depending on the situation nationally and in their local area. Measures may also vary because of things like the size and layout of particular schools, and how pupils need to travel to and from school in your area.

Schools, nurseries 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.


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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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