Response to statement on school reopening


27th July 2020

Following the latest statement from Deputy First Minister John Swinney, children and families service convener Stewart Hunter is reassuring local families that everything is being done to ensure that city schools will be ready to open in August, if it is safe to do so.

Councillor Hunter said: “Preparations to reopen our schools are well underway and I am grateful to the Deputy First Minister for providing this latest update on how guidance is developing from scientific advice about coronavirus.

“This is extremely helpful for our efforts across Dundee to plan how pupils will return to the classroom, if it is safe to do so.

“I would like to thank all our staff who are working hard to ensure that these buildings can be ready to open their doors again. All schools have planning assumptions in place for a 100% return of pupils from August.

“There will be a consistent approach to safety across Dundee working with our trade union colleagues and there will be measures taken in each school to achieve this for both pupils and staff.

“The city council will be providing ongoing information to families through its website and social media channels. We are also developing an updated FAQ section on our website to give as much clarity as possible over a range of issues including transport and school meals.

“Individual schools themselves will be in touch with families about the exact details of how the return will go ahead.

“It will be next Thursday (July 30) when a final decision will be announced by the Scottish Government on whether schools can open full-time

“In the meantime, we will continue to work hard across Dundee to make sure that if that confirmation goes ahead, we will be able to get children and young people back into the classroom from August 12.”

Dundee City Council

Dundee draws skilled workers from a 60-minute catchment population of 640,000 and has a local population of over 140,000. The availability of a large pool of highly skilled labour is a key feature in the Dundee economy. Flexibility in the labour force is currently more prevalent in Dundee than in Scotland as a whole. All forms of labour market flexibility - part-time, temporary employment, self-employment and shift work - are widely operational within the city. Labour force stability in the city is excellent, enabling companies to plan with confidence. Labour turnover levels are less than 5% and absenteeism averages 2%.

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