Need to know: relaxation of Scottish Covid rules

In-person transition visits are permitted from June for future P1 and S1 pupils

Emma Seith

Need to know: relaxation of Scottish Covid rules

As of Monday, restrictions were eased for the vast majority of people in Scotland – with hugs and indoor socialising now permitted

However, there were exceptions and, as the rest of the country began to enjoy greater freedom, moving from level 3 into level 2, Glasgow and Moray were told that Covid rates were too high and that people in both areas would remain under tighter restrictions. Meanwhile, most island communities received a boost as they skipped straight to level 1.

And new guidance on what the changes mean for schools was published yesterday.

Here are the key points:

  • Nursery children will be permitted to visit the primary schools they are due to join next month – although it is recommended schools “promote the use of outdoors”; that numbers are as low as possible; and that nursery staff and parents should not be present “unless absolutely necessary to offer comfort and support”. 
  • Primary children moving to secondary in August. Again it is recommended that schools “keep group numbers down” and that primary staff do not attend. The guidance also states P7 children should “follow the same mitigations as pupils in S1”.
  • Enhanced in-person transition arrangements are also permitted for children with additional support needs due to move into primary or secondary and, when it comes to primary children, the guidance explicitly states this “may involve the attendance of parents”.

Long read: How to help P1 children settle into Big School

Also today: 'Teachers and students boxed in by assessment rules'

WATCH: Nicola Sturgeon insists teachers' judgement is key


  • School day visits can now take place (and have been permitted since 10 May 2021). 
  • School residential visits to outdoor education centres can recommence, from 31 May at the earliest, subject to a number of mitigations being put in place.
  • For schools in areas that have moved to level 2, drama activity is permitted outdoors in small groups and indoors if low-risk criteria are met.
  • At level 2, low-risk music activity is permitted outdoors, as well as digitally and indoors, subject to risk assessment.
  • At level 2, higher-risk music activity, including singing, is not recommended, except in limited circumstances for pupils preparing for assessment.
  • At level 2, outdoors contact and non-contact physical education and dance are permitted; group and individual non-contact PE is permitted indoors.

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Emma Seith

Emma Seith

Emma Seith is a reporter for Tes Scotland

Find me on Twitter @Emma_Seith

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