Schools Update - August 2021

An education update from Gillian Brydson, Director Skills, Education and Learning

Loudhailer announcement

Dear Parents/Carers

Returning to Schools and Nurseries

I hope your family have enjoyed the school holiday and have been able to enjoy the summer weather.

Our Headteachers and staff are looking forward to welcoming pupils back to schools and nurseries from Thursday 19 August 2021

All our staff have high expectations and high aspirations for pupils and staff. Like you, our teachers want the best possible future for your child and that they are happy, confident and successful in school. I want to make sure that you, as parents and carers, feel involved in your child's learning, feel welcome and listened to in our schools. I will also provide you with updates on any issues that may impact on your child's learning. In addition, the Council's website will be regularly updated, ensuring that details of any updates are shared and accessible. Regular updates can be found here: SupportDG - Dumfries and Galloway Council - Schools and childcare (dumgal.gov.uk)

The Scottish Government has published updated guidance which means that the COVID arrangements will be the same as they were at the end of term. These arrangements will be in place for the next six weeks. As such, our schools will continue to observe measures in order to keep everyone safe including the use of social distancing, face coverings, regular cleaning throughout the day and dedicated seating plans.

In addition, our staff and secondary pupils will continue to undertake regular asymptomatic testing. All are being encouraged to take a test the day before returning to school and then twice weekly thereafter. These mitigations will help to keep everyone safe within our school environments and enhance the confidence of our school communities. LFD tests are available at various locations in our local communities. In addition, they can be ordered directly on the Scottish Government website and sent directly to your home. Details are available on the website: www.gov.scot/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-getting-tested/pages/no-covid-symptoms/

For your fullest information the updated Schools' Guidance can be found, in full here: https://www.gov.scot/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-on-reducing-the-risks-in-schools/pages/overview

The last 18 months have produced unprecedented challenges for our young people and our staff. However, our recent positive exam results have demonstrated just how resilient, focused and motivated our young people are. I have no doubt that this year will also bring its share of problems, but I am confident that across Dumfries and Galloway, our young people, staff and indeed whole school communities will step up to these together.

Yours sincerely

Gillian Brydson

Director Skills, Education and Learning