During school closure, weekly grids will be posted under the Covid-19 tab of the website.
Following the First Minister’s announcement on Saturday, please find more details of what this will mean for our services.
Following public health advice, the Scottish Government advises schools should remain OPEN until the end of term. Having taken advice from public health, Midlothian Council will ensure our schools and early learning and childcare settings will continue with effective preventative measures in place.
We understand that some parents have been in touch to say they will keep their child at home. If you intend to keep your child at home please inform your school as you normally would.
On Tuesday 22 December, we will update parents and carers about arrangements for schools and our early learning settings after the festive break.
We will be updating parents and carers later today about school arrangements for Monday onwards in the light of the First Minister’s announcement last night about tighter coronavirus restrictions. We will also be updating our Midlothian Council webpage with information about how the FM announcement will impact on other council services. Many thanks for your patience.
The Scottish Government has announced there will be no changes to the planned Christmas and New Year holiday dates for schools. This means Midlothian schools will close for the festive break on Tuesday 22 December and will reopen to pupils on Wednesday 6 January, as planned.
The Deputy First Minister John Swinney made the announcement today (Thursday) after taking public health advice on if the holiday period should be extended.
That advice is, on balance, there would be less transmission of COVID-19 through children and young people being in school than mixing out of school. Adding this to the issues around vulnerable children and the need for childcare for key worker children, public health advice is to not change term dates at either end. Mr Swinney was also mindful extending the school holidays could cause significant difficulties for working parents.
Individual schools will provide information to their parents and carers about contact tracing arrangements for the holiday period.
Many thanks for your support and co-operation.
I’m writing to thank parents, carers and pupils who are helping keep local people safe and ultimately saving lives by complying with national coronavirus restrictions. I am sure you will appreciate the significant effort of all of our staff working in schools to do the same. However, I also need to stress we must remain vigilant as local cases of coronavirus are rising. As is the case across other areas in Scotland, this is, in part, because of transmission within local gatherings.
We continue to work alongside NHS Public Health and Police Scotland to protect local people. Please remember the restrictions in place on indoor gatherings in private homes. You should not meet anyone from outside your household inside your home or their home. This ban includes extended family members although you are permitted to provide care or support to a vulnerable person in their home and there are exemptions for childcare and tradespeople doing essential work. The rules on indoor gatherings apply to you and your family, including your young people over the age of 12, so we ask you to help them understand the rules and set an example for them too.
Where there are breaches of the legislation, Police Scotland will engage, explain the legislation and encourage compliance and will use enforcement action as a last resort.
We know that the overwhelming majority of people of all ages are following the rules and realise not meeting friends and family is hard, particularly on young people. However, to reduce the number of transmissions of the virus and keep schools open, all of us, young and old, need to do our bit by complying with the rules.
Thank you again for you and your family’s continued support.
Executive Director Children, Young People and Partnerships