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Schools are now returning to normal protocols.
This page will only feature key further updates. 

Please find the latest updated COVID-19 guidance documents from the Scottish Government, NHS Scotland & Public Health Scotland.

Public Health Scotland guidance (to date)

Latest Public Health Scotland guidance for general public.

Reducing Risks in ELC (2 May)

Non-statutory guidance for early learning and childcare.

Reducing Risks at Schools (29 April)

Non-statutory guidance until end of 21-22 school year.

'Stay at Home' guidance (28 April)

Guidance replacing isolation guidance.

Advisory Sub-Group on Education and Children’s Issues (ongoing)

Minutes, membership and documentation

Reducing risks in schools (13 April)

Updated guidance, removing most remaining restrictions and mitigations from schools.

Early learning and childcare (18 March)

Guidance for early learning, school aged childcare and childminder settings on reducing risks of COVID-19.

Test and Protect Transition Plan (15 March)

Updated test and protect plan, including move to endemic guidance.

Scotland's Strategic Framework Update (22 Feb)

Sets out Scotland’s approach to managing COVID-19 and its associated harms for the long term.

Reducing Risks in schools (17 Feb)

Updated guidance - includes face coverings and assemblies - supersedes previous versions.

COVID-19: childcare sector toolkit (2 Feb)

Materials on testing, vaccination and reporting.

Sport and physical activity (24 Jan)

Latest guidance from SportScotland.

International travel restrictions eased (24 Jan)

Update removing testing requirements for fully vaccinated travellers.

Guidance on reducing risks in schools (7 Jan)

The schools guidance incorporates updates to self-isolation, the Critical National Infrastructure exemption and for individuals who were asked to self-isolate as close contact before 6 January 2022.

Easing of international travel restrictions (6 Jan)

People travelling to Scotland from abroad who are fully vaccinated or under the age of 18 will no longer need to take pre-departure Covid tests, and will also no longer be required to self-isolate on arrival until they've received a negative result.

Guidance on reducing the risks in schools (5 Jan) 

This latest update changes advice on self-isolation and vaccine guidance.

Self-isolation (5 Jan 2022)

Latest guidance from NHS Inform.

Boarding pupil travel exemption (15 Dec)

Updated exemption travel details for boarding school pupils and unaccompanied travellers under-18.

Guidance on reducing the risks in schools (22 Nov) 

This latest updated approach to retaining mitigations is expected to remain in place until half-term.  Recent changes include access for school visitors and spectators at school sports.

Safer businesses and workplaces (3 Nov)

This guidance is for all businesses and workplaces and provides advice on measures that you should continue to take to reduce risk and support staff and customers. 

Guidance for school age childcare services (11 Oct)

This non-statutory guidance applies to all providers of Care Inspectorate registered school age childcare services in all sectors – local authority, private and third sectors. This includes breakfast clubs, after-school care and holiday care.

Schools visits and trips (10 Nov)

This guidance is for those organising visits for school-aged children, including grant-aided schools and independent schools, and youth work providers organising residential stays. It sets out the current position in relation to organised visits and trips for school-aged children.

Contact tracing (August)

Updated NHS guidance on contact tracing.

International travel and managed isolation (quarantine) (23 Nov)

Updated quarantine rules and information on the process for people entering Scotland, including residential pupils.

State of the epidemic (14 May)

Scottish Government briefing.

Sport Scotland

Covid-19 information and guidance

Test And Protect (20 April)

Guidance on collection of visitor contact details 

International travel and managed isolation (quarantine) (8 April)

Sectoral exemptions: boarding pupils and children under 18 travelling directly to Scotland do not need to isolate in a hotel or at home

Guidance on reducing the risks in schools (8 April)

Non-statutory guidance to ensure a safe and supportive environment for learning and teaching - including residential annex

Return to educational establishments - Physical Education Guidelines (22 March)

Education Scotland PE guidelines

Guidance for the phased reopening of schools (8 March)

Scottish Government guidance on schools reopening

Physical Education (3 March)

Update guidelines from Education Scotland

Education Scotland - Phase 2 of return to in-person learning (3 March)

Guidance for preparing in-school and remote learning for S1-S6 

Advisory Sub-Group on Education and Children’s Issues (3 March)

Phased return to in-person learning in schools and ELC settings - next steps

Coronavirus (COVID-19): Strategic Framework update (23 February)

Set out plans to restore, in a phased way, greater normality to our everyday lives

Guidance on schools reopening (16 February)

Guidance on arrangements for the phased reopening of schools in February/March 2021.

SQA Alternative Certification Model (16 February)

Details of the alternative certification model for National Qualifications in 2021

Prioritising the return of Senior Phase Learners

Education Scotland technical guidance for providing senior phase practical work in-school

Advisory Sub-Group on mitigations to minimise transmission (12 February)

Advisory note from Advisory Sub-Group on Education and Children’s Issues on mitigations to minimise transmission of COVID-19 during phased return to in-person learning in schools and ELC settings.

School visits and trips planned for Spring 2021 term (3 February)

Guidance for school visits and trips

Remote learning guidance

This advice on remote learning has been prepared by Education Scotland, in partnership with the COVID-19 Education Recovery Group (CERG), to support practitioners in leading remote learning in the coming weeks. (Jan 2021)

Guidance on new stay at home regulations coming into effect on 5 January 2021.

Scottish Government guidance

Coronavirus (COVID-19): guidance on travel and transport

Guidance on travel rules and restrictions and protection levels, including information on essential travel. (18 Jan 2021)

Coronavirus (COVID-19): international travel and quarantine

Quarantine rules and information on the process for people entering the UK. (4 Jan 2021)

School re-opening arrangements for January 2021 (21 December)

Scottish Government guidance

Getting tested in Scotland (21 December)

Updated testing guidance from Scottish Government

Care Inspectorate COVID guidance for services

Early Learning and Childcare COVID-19 Update.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) in schools (18 November)

Scottish Government evidence paper on transmission, risks and absences.

Education Scotland - practical activities guidelines (4 November)

Updated guidelines for health and wellbeing, sciences and technologies, expressive arts

COVID 19 Advisory Sub-Group on Education and Children’s Issues

Minutes and documents from Government Advisory sub-group

Scottish Government - updated school guidance (30 October)

Non-statutory guidelines include new requirements for face coverings for S 4-6 pupils.

School guidance on reducing the risks from COVID-19 in schools

Non-statutory guidance to ensure a safe and supportive environment for learning and teaching.

Education Scotland - updated guidance

Updated practical subject guidelines - September 2020

Coronavirus (COVID-19): Guidance on preparing for the start of the new school term in August 2020 - Version 3

Updated guidance - Various updates for clarification of key issues, including self-isolation, testing procedures, quarantine, outbreak and case management, links to updated guidelines on physical education, home economics and links to the latest advice from the Advisory Sub-Group on Education and Children’s Issues.

Return to Physical Education (September)

Education Scotland return to educational establishments Physical Education guidelines - indoor contact sports delayed until 5 October.

Science and technologies guidance 

SSERC guidance (September) 

Non-Covid Ailments

Guidance on children with non-COVID ailments (September)

Duke of Edinburgh award

Outdoor Education Centres "OEC" (August)

Guidance to support the safe reopening and operation of OEC for visits by schools

Face coverings in school (25 August)

Updated reopening guidance including details on face coverings, along with Advisory Group advice.

Scotland - Phase 3 update (20 August)

Latest update on Phase 3, including sports facilities, soft play, etc.



SQA examinations updates

Update on use of school estimates for results, update on appeals, and consultation on 2021 examination diet.

A-level, GCSE

Announcement on use of centre-assessed grades for 2020 certification.

International Baccalaureate

IB results review

SQA 2020 results details (4 August)


Schools Advice Card

Card designed for managers and employees to guide action to prevent the spread of COVID-19; to support workplace communications and training; and take action in the event of an outbreak - including Health Protection Team contacts.

Advice for schools - Visits and Trips (14 August 2020)

Guidance on preparing for start of new school term (30 July)

Guidance on preparing for the start of the new school term in August 2020

Guidance on reopening early learning and childcare services (30 July)

Non-statutory guidance for early learning and childcare (ELC) providers to support safe reopening during Phase 3.

Support for continuity in learning (30 July)

Guidance to help local authorities, early learning centres and schools continue to support children and young people's learning during the coronavirus outbreak.

Funding follows the child and  national standard for early learning and childcare providers: interim guidance (30 July)

Interim guidance on requirements on early learning and childcare settings and local authorities from August 2020

COVID-19: Test and Protect (30 July)

Information and support for people who are asked to self-isolate because of COVID-19.

Route map - Phase 3 Update (30 July)

An update to Scotland's Route Map, setting out further phase 3 changes, including the full and safe re-opening of schools.

Test and Protect (17 July)

Leaflet providing information on the Test and Protect service from NHS Scotland, a new way to tackle coronavirus.

School transport (16 July)

Advisory Sub-Group advisory note on school transport

Physical distancing in schools (16 July)

Advisory Sub-Group note on physical distancing in schools

Phase 3: guidance on re-opening school age childcare services (3 July)

Non-statutory guidance for school age childcare providers in local authority, private and third sectors to support a safe re-opening during Phase 3.

COVID-19 Advisory Group: physical distancing advice (2 July)

Statement by the Deputy First Minister on re-opening of schools (22 June)

Test and Protect information leaflet (22 June)

Leaflet providing information on the Test and Protect service from NHS Scotland, a new way to tackle coronavirus.

Awarding 2020 - Post-Certification Review (Appeals) Service - Information for centres (19 June)

The service will provide for further, evidence-based consideration of grades if schools and colleges do not think awarded grades fairly reflect candidate performance. Assessment evidence must be available to support the review request.

COVID-19 Phase 2 (18 June)

Scottish Government guidance on Phase 2: staying safe and protecting others (physical distancing), and updated Route Map.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Phase 3: guidance on reopening early learning and childcare services

Non-statutory guidance for early learning and childcare (ELC) providers in the local authority, private and third sectors to support a safe reopening of these settings during Phase 3.

The new guidance sets out the core public health measures that will need to be taken to allow safe reopening.

Coronavirus (COVID-19): Scotland's route map - what you can and cannot do (8 June)

A routemap has been published setting out our plans for easing Scotland's coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions in four phases.

Scotland moved to Phase 1 of the routemap on 28 May 2020. This guide provides more information on what you can and cannot do.

National Qualifications 2020 Awarding

SQA update for schools and colleges - 3 June

Coronavirus (COVID-19): re-opening schools guide (28 May)

Non-statutory guidance for local authorities and schools in their planning for a safe, phased opening in August 2020, including boarding and residential.

Coronavirus (COVID-19): public use of face coverings

Guidance for Scotland on the personal use of face coverings during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Coronavirus (COVID-19): staying at home and away from others (physical distancing) (28 May)

Rules on staying at home and away from others to help protect the NHS and save lives.

Coronavirus (COVID-19): schools, early learning and childcare settings - scientific evidence  (26 May)

The Scottish Government has published the scientific evidence and public health advice specifically relating to transmission and exposure, for schools and ELC.

The principle sources of evidence and advice are the Scottish COVID-19 Advisory Group, the World Health Organisation (WHO), the UK Government’s Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE), the Children’s Task and Finish Working Group (a sub-group of SAGE), Public Health Scotland and lessons from international experience.

Scottish Government  framework for reopening schools & early learning (21 May)

This document sets out how there will be transition back to a greater level of face-to-face education in schools and early learning and childcare (ELC) settings as soon as this is able to happen safely.

Framework for decision making - route map through and out of crisis (21 May)

This route map gives an indication of the order in which the Scottish Government will seek to change current restrictions. It provides practical examples of what people, organisations and businesses can expect to see change over time.

Chancellor extends furlough scheme until October

The government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme will remain open until the end of October, the Chancellor announced today (Tuesday 12 May 2020).

Coronavirus (Covid-19): framework for decision making - further information

Sets out further information about the challenges Scotland faces and provides illustrative examples of the steps that might form part of the initial changes to the current lockdown restrictions.

Coronavirus (COVID-19): Qualifications Contingency Group

The Qualifications Contingency Group is invoked in circumstances where there is a system wide risk to the delivery of the exam diet and the awarding of qualifications. 

The coronavirus pandemic presents such a risk and the Scottish Government, in full consultation with the Scottish Qualifications Authority, took the decision to invoke the group.

UK Government Advice on Covid-19 Financial Support within Education

The UK Department for Education has issued updated guidance on financial support during the Covid-19 outbreak for education, early learning and childcare, and children’s social care on Friday 17th April.  The guidance is available at:  While this guidance applies to England, the schemes by which financial support is provided are UK wide and all applications will be assessed by HMRC. The guidance should be read in conjunction with the advice for your sector below.  Providers of Early Learning and Childcare should also referred to Scottish guidance which has been developed specifically for this sector, which is available at

Coronavirus (COVID-19): residential childcare

Guidance for residential children’s houses, residential schools and secure care facilities on staffing, social distancing and self-isolation.

Information and guidance for social or community care and residential settings

The guidance provides advice about COVID-19 (previously known as novel coronavirus 2019) for those working in residential settings.

A control measure tool for the control of incidents and outbreaks in Social or Community Care & Residential Settings, specific for COVID-19, is also available here, and should be used accordingly, following the general advice provided in the guidance.

SQA National Courses – Delivering Results in 2020

Together with Scotland’s education system, SQA remains committed to delivering results to learners, in as fair a way as possible, at this exceptionally difficult time. We want to ensure that young people across Scotland get the results they deserve, so they can progress to further learning or work.  Read more...

Guidance for home learning (20 April)

New guidance to support the home learning of children and young people during the new term.

Supporting Pupils, Parents And Teachers - Learning During Term 4 (20 April)

Scottish Government guidance to help support continuity in children and young people’s learning in Term 4, following the closure of schools in March due to Covid-19.


COVID-19 - information and guidance for social or community care & residential settings

Ofqual - Exceptional arrangements for exam grading and assessment

Consultation on grading specified general qualifications in 2020: GCSEs, AS, A levels, Extended Project Qualifications and Advanced Extension Award - closes at 11:45pm on 29 April 2020.

HSE joint statement with Partnership on Health and Safety in Scotland (16 April)

This is an extremely worrying time for businesses and workers. We know many workers, union reps and employers have questions and concerns about safe working – especially for those continuing to attend a place of work away from their homes. Read more...

Coronavirus (COVID-19) – HSE Stakeholder Bulletin (14 April)

Welcome to the HSE Stakeholder Bulletin for coronavirus (COVID-19) providing a round-up of the latest news and updates on workplace health and safety issues.

Reassurance for HE/FE students (14 April)

Prospective university and college students are being reassured that they will receive their results on time, and universities and colleges will assess qualifications as part of the admissions process.

EIS Briefing for Members in Independent schools / third sector establishments.

Topics covered include:

  • Sick Pay and Salary
  • Changes to Working to Conditions
  • Working from Home Remotely
  • Working in a Secure Setting

SQA update on arrangements for quality assurance and the certification of National Courses and Awards – a message to schools and colleges (2 April)

Providing an update in three key areas. Firstly, what evidence-based judgements we need teachers and lecturers to make about their learners’ grades to help inform certification at National 5, Higher and Advanced Higher. Secondly, the marking of National 5 coursework. Finally, details on our approach to the certification of National 2, National 3 and National 4 courses, National Certificates, National Progression Awards, Skills for Work courses, Awards, and free-standing units at SCQF levels 5, 6 and 7. Read more...


GTC Scotland publishes guide for online good practice

The General Teaching Council for Scotland (GTC Scotland) has today published advice on online good practice.

The guide, Engaging Online, contains good practice for online working including on social media and when storing learners’ data. A reflective questions section aims to help teachers consider their professional practice.

Ken Muir, Chief Executive and Registrar said, “As the majority of teachers in Scotland have now moved from teaching in the classroom to teaching online, it is important that we refresh our advice on online working.

“This guide offers useful information on working in an online environment and is intended as a professional learning and discussion tool to enhance teacher professionalism.”

The guide has been endorsed by the Teaching Professional Associations of Scotland.

Access the Guide

Access working from home resources

Coronavirus Act 2020

Further to the briefing on the Coronavirus Act, and relevant Scottish legislation, please note that Schedule 16.2 adds a new ‘duty’, rather than advice, that schools must have regard to any advice from the Chief Medical Officer:

While the Act also contains provisions to allow Government to direct schools to close, or open, it is hoped that any current Government guidance would be sufficient for schools.

Coronavirus (COVID-19): school and ELC closures - guidance for key workers (31 March)

This guidance sets out what childcare and learning provision we expect to be made available to key workers during closures of school and day care of children, including early learning and childcare (ELC), services to deal with the coronavirus outbreak.

Only key workers who cannot fulfil their critical functions when they are working remotely from home may qualify for critical childcare provision.

Closure of school and day care of children services is an important part of efforts to protect public health. Read more...

SQA statement on coursework for National Courses (2 April)

Following the announcement by the First Minister on Sunday, that no young person with SQA coursework to complete should attend school to do so, we continue to work hard on how we should take coursework evidence into account, in determining young people’s final grades.

Everyone here at SQA will do their utmost, given the current situation, and with the support of the education system, to ensure that learners’ hard work is rightly and fairly recognised and allows them to proceed to further learning or work. Read more...

Covid-19: GTC Scotland launches teacher wellbeing resources

GTC Scotland has created and curated a variety of resources and advice to support teacher and lecturer health and wellbeing during the Covid-19 crisis.

View our Teacher Tips videos for advice from colleagues; get insights from health and wellbeing professionals in our webinar recordings and articles; and access useful materials from health and wellbeing organisations under Resources.

Useful Links


Managing the impacts on Scottish education

Deputy First Minister John Swinney updates Parliament.

Responding to the coronavirus pandemic is a matter of the greatest national importance, and the scale of the challenge in front of us is truly without precedent.

Every aspect of our national life has been affected by this crisis, and sustaining our education system has been at the forefront of my mind.

My priorities are to ensure the health and wellbeing of our children, young people and staff, and to maintain teaching and learning wherever this is possible, guided by the advice of the Chief Medical Officer and public health experts.

I would like to place on record my sincere appreciation for the extraordinary work that all of the teaching and non-teaching staff in our schools and Early Learning and Childcare settings have been doing to maintain educational continuity in these unprecedented days.  Read more.

Statement by the Chief Executive of the Scottish Qualifications Authority and Scotland’s Chief Examining Officer

This is an unprecedented situation, and the closure of schools for an extended period will affect almost every family across Scotland.

The Scottish Qualifications Authority has recently been working through a range of scenarios in relation to the exam diet, including disruption and postponement. However, as the Deputy First Minister has outlined in Parliament today, the exam diet in 2020 cannot go ahead and I have been asked by the Deputy First Minister to develop an alternative certification model. Read More



The guidance for Scottish educational settings has now been updated and incorporated into the following general advice for all non-healthcare settings: You will see it has some specific material for educational settings in Section 2, as well as other advice that applies more generally

Health Protection Scotland recommend that all educational settings remain open unless they have been advised by the local Health Protection Team to close. Children appear to be less affected than other age groups however handwashing should be encouraged before and after any activity, such as meal times, break times and sporting activities. Your local public health team will provide advice if you have had a symptomatic case of COVID-19 on site. At present school closure is not usually required but the local health protection team will support you to make a risk assessment.

Health Protection Scotland will update this guidance as needed and as additional information becomes available.


Update on self-isolation for those with symptoms consistent with COVID-19

Guidance from around the world



Australia -

New Zealand -

Southern Africa -