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Wellbeing of pupils to be prioritised

6th June 2020

Guidance for education authorities and teachers published for next academic year.

New guidance will help teachers and councils prepare for the ‘blended model' of both classroom and home learning when schools re-open in August.

The guidance, produced by the Education Recovery Group, also details broad expectations for what Scotland's curriculum will look like during this period in Early Learning Centres and schools, including through Gaelic Medium Education.

The guidance includes:

a focus on prioritising the physical, mental and emotional wellbeing of children and young people, practitioners and families

using the Refreshed Narrative for Curriculum for Excellence as a practical tool for practitioners.

continuing engagement with children and their families to support them in this new way of learning

considering the impacts of coronavirus (COVID-19), especially in vulnerable children and young people and those with additional support needs

Guidance on the curriculum, aimed at parents and carers, will be published shortly in partnership with the National Parent Forum of Scotland

Deputy First Minister John Swinney said:

"Since most schools closed in March, a huge amount of positive work has been undertaken by education professionals to support continuity of learning. This advice recognises that schools, classrooms and ways of learning will be completely different in the recovery phase, so the education system as well as young people and their families will need help and support to adapt.

"The core principles of Curriculum for Excellence that give teachers flexibility and put learners at the heart of education will remain critical during the recovery phase. This guidance states that teachers should be confident in prioritising their pupils' physical and mental wellbeing - over anything else - as the best way of supporting children and young people back into learning.

"The curriculum will continue to be developed locally by Early Learning Centres, primary and secondary schools, and partnership colleges, taking account of the local circumstances of children and their families.

"Specific guidance is also available for education authorities and schools to support young people who have been most adversely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, including those from disadvantaged backgrounds, with additional support needs or those who may struggle to transition smoothly into the next academic year."

Background

Coronavirus (COVID-19): Curriculum for Excellence in the Recovery Phase

https://www.gov.scot/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-curriculum-for-excellence-in-the-recovery-phase/

Coronavirus (COVID-19): support for continuity in learning

https://www.gov.scot/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-support-for-continuity-in-learning/

Teachers and other school staff are preparing for a new model of learning from 11 August. Education authorities and schools should draw on this national guidance to work in partnership with trades unions, staff, parents and children to develop local plans.

These plans are contingent on scientific and medical advice that it is safe to proceed and public health measures being in place.

The Education Recovery Group includes representatives from local authorities, teachers' organisations and trades unions.

 

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