Near normal schooling essential for COVID recovery

West of Scotland MSP Maurice Corry has welcomed the decision for schools to return full time in August. Mr Corry said "It was good to see John Swinney perform a complete U-turn on his decision to allow schools to return to normal, but not before a huge effort by teaching staff to transform schools to comply with social distancing. John Swinney and the SNP government had been saying they were following “scientific” evidence; that disappeared however, when pressure was applied and they realised they had no support for their plans."

Initial plans for blended learning had been branded 'very difficult' and 'almost unworkable,' not just for teaching staff but for the children and parents. Critics said that it showed a complete lack of understanding of how education, or the practicalities of family life work.

Mr Corry added "August return to schools is still sometime away, and we don’t know what will happen by then, but we should be aiming for as close to normality as possible.

"The country is facing an uphill struggle to rebuild the economy, to preserve jobs and to get back on top of medical care. It would be an even harder challenge if parents who work need to home school their children at the same time. The youth of the country are our future, and they need to be well educated; we cannot fail them.

"Teaching staff across the country have been doing an incredible job. The challenges posed are huge, and the costs incurred by schools, whose budgets are already stretched to capacity, to ensure pupil and staff safety are high. John Swinney and his government need to ensure local authorities are well funded so schools get the resources they need."