COVID-19 Early Learning and Childcare Nursery Admission update – May 2020

The current health outbreak continues to have an impact on arrangements for Early Leaning and Childcare for the forthcoming academic year 2020/21.

We know that parents will want to know about nursery places within council nurseries, partner nurseries and childminders for August 2020 as soon as possible. We recognise that you will also want reassurances on how our services will operate to keep your children safe. We want to update you on our preparations.

The Deputy First Minister has convened the ‘Covid Education Recovery Group’ (CERG). This group brings together key stakeholders in school education and early learning and childcare to support national and local government re-open education and childcare settings when it is safe to do so.

As you would expect, this is a complex process and the safety and wellbeing of children, families and staff is key. New national guidance is being prepared and all service providers will need time to understand what needs to be in place before we can plan to open. This includes reviewing our facilities, the number of children we can accommodate under any new guidance, hygiene and cleaning, and staffing impacts.

Given the current uncertainty we have had to delay issuing notification of council nursery place allocations. We will review this decision in June. Partner Nurseries and Childminders will contact with parents/carers direct about places within their setting, they will also need time to understand and prepare for these changes.

We are grateful for your understanding and patience at this time and will continue to update the website as more information becomes available.

What types of food do animals eat?

What types of food do animals eat?

We are finding out about wild animals this week. These are animals that have to find their own food to eat. I wonder what some animals in Scotland eat? Scotland is the country where we live. Some animals eat meat. Some animals eat plants. Some animals eat meat and plants. I eat meat and plants. What do you eat?

Click on the link above to find out  what some animals you can find in Scotland need to eat.

Lions and tigers and bears, oh my!

Grrrrrrrrr ….. Good morning  Nursery ….. Things have gone wild or at least the animals have. Last week we talked about pets – this week we are going to think about wild animals.

We would like you to draw or paint a wild animal, it could be a real wild animal or you could make up your own animal. Think about what pattern it might  have – spots like a leopard, stripes like a tiger or zebra. What colour – golden yellow like a lion or different colours like a parrot. What size is it – small like a chameleon or tall like a giraffe – you may need a very big piece of paper.

Remember and take a photograph and share with us on the Twitter page. Go Wild.




Message to all Parent’s/Carer’s from Lesley Brown, Chief Operating Officer (Education)

Dear Parent / Carer,

Following the announcement by the First Minister yesterday about the phased reopening of schools, we know that you will have lots of questions about when and how our children and young people will return to schools across East Lothian.

In her statement, the First Minister reported that teachers and other staff will return to schools during June to prepare classrooms for the new term and a different model of learning. It was announced that schools will reopen from 11 August, however, to allow appropriate physical distancing, children would return to a blended model of part-time in-school and part-time at-home learning. I would highlight that 11 August is earlier than our planned date of 19 August for pupils to return to school after the summer holidays.

In East Lothian, our Education Service is considering the implications of this announcement and has already started to plan for the reopening of schools and early learning and childcare settings in August as outlined by the First Minister.  We are reflecting on the yesterday’s announcement and are awaiting guidance from the National Education Recovery Group next week which will help us determine and confirm more specific details of the arrangements which will be shared with you as soon as we can.

It was also announced that, where possible, there would be transition support for children going into primary 1 or moving from primary 7 to secondary school. In East Lothian, our schools already provide a range of transition opportunities and these have continued during the lockdown period with many schools providing distance creative and innovative transition activities. In the coming weeks, we will also consider those children who may benefit from further transition support.

During June and over the summer, we will continue to provide emergency childcare provision for the children of key workers and we will be in contact with parents and carers about the arrangements for this in due course.

I would like to thank all parents, carers, children and young people for their patience and understanding as we work through a very complex situation. I know this has been a difficult and uncertain time and we are committed to sharing further information with you as soon as we can.

Kind regards,


What's going on in Pinkie? Read it here first!