Scotland lockdown update: What has Nicola Sturgeon said about new Covid rules?

17 February 2021, 10:55

Nicola Sturgeon set out Scotland's plan to phase back schools
Nicola Sturgeon set out Scotland's plan to phase back schools. Picture: PA Images
Naomi Bartram

By Naomi Bartram

When is Scotland's 'roadmap out of lockdown' and what has Nicola Sturgeon said about schools?

Nicola Sturgeon has said she will publish her lockdown exit plan next week.

During a speech at Holyrood yesterday, Scotland’s First Minister confirmed that schools will begin a phased return of pupils from Monday.

But she also said that all other current lockdown restrictions will remain in place. So, here’s everything we know about Scotland’s lockdown rules…

Scotland lockdown update

Nicola Sturgeon confirmed there will be no changes to current Covid lockdown rules in Scotland, apart from the phased and gradual return to school for children.

Nicola Sturgeon spoke to Scottish Parliament on February 16th
Nicola Sturgeon spoke to Scottish Parliament on February 16th. Picture: PA Images

Speaking to the Scottish Parliament, she announced that pre-school children and pupils in years 1, 2 and 3 will return to school from Monday (February 22).

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A limited number of senior students who need access to school facilities for practical work will also go back to school, while vulnerable children will receive increased support.

But Ms Sturgeon confirmed that the 'stay at home' message would remain until at least the beginning of March.

She said: "I want to be clear, though, that the need to properly assess the impact of this limited re-opening means we think it unlikely, at this stage, that there will be any further return to school before 15 March.

"As we consider these issues, we are of course doing everything we can to ensure that schools are as safe as possible for children, and for the education workforce.

"As senior phase pupils, teachers and school staff start to return, we will be making at-home lateral flow tests available to them twice a week, as part of a wider package of in-school mitigations."

Speaking about the coming weeks and months, Ms Sturgeon indicated that contact with family and the reopening of non-essential retail would be among the first steps taken.

This will be followed by a wider relaunch of the economy, including the hospitality sector.

But she warned against Easter holidays, adding it’s ‘highly unlikely’ hotels and self-catering venues will be open by April.

Ms Sturgeon also said overseas travel is unlikely by summer, but staycations may be possible depending on data nearer the time.

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