Following the First Minister’s announcement that nurseries and schools will stay shut for the majority of pupils until at least the start of February, the city council is issuing details to families about the new arrangements.
A senior councillor is also taking the opportunity to ask city families to stick with the restrictions and support children’s wellbeing and remote education during a “new challenge for us all”.
Local authority nurseries and schools, including Kingspark, will only be open for children of key workers and vulnerable children, including those with complex additional support needs, from what would have been the start of term from Thursday January 7 2021.
If a child attends a private nursery or childminder, the family should contact them directly with any enquiries.
The festive holiday has been extended for all other pupils until Monday January 11 2021.
From then, they will stay at home as remote learning is provided by their nursery or school until at least Monday February 1 under new lockdown restrictions.
The Scottish Government will review that position on January 18.
Nurseries and schools are individually confirming the new arrangements with families, as remote learning will extend beyond the period which was originally planned.
City council children and families convener Stewart Hunter said: “I can appreciate how frustrating more change must be for families, children and young people.
“However, I hope that everyone can understand that we must do everything we can to guard against the new strain of coronavirus during what is a new challenge for us all following any extremely difficult festive period.
“We need to support the wellbeing and education of our children and young people. Our dedicated nursery and school staff will be making every effort to ensure that appropriate activities and resources are distributed and available for learning.
“We are under no illusions. This will not be a direct replacement for the classroom. But, given the unprecedented nature of the global emergency, we have to act in the best interest of everyone’s health.
“On top of resources available in schools, the council has invested over £800,000 of extra Scottish Government funding for 2,000 G5 ProBooks and connection packages.
“There is no ‘one size fits all’ approach to this and remote learning will be tailored appropriately by nurseries and schools for their communities.
“Secondary schools will also be speaking to pupils directly about the implications for qualification course work.
“This is not an easy time and I have no simple answers to the many questions that have been raised.
“However, I know that our dedicated nursery and school staff will be working tirelessly to help our children and young people.
“Nurseries and schools will still be available for families to contact to discuss any concerns they may have.
“I would urge people to stick with the rules so that we can all get through this.”
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%.