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Free school meals to continue for pupils in Scotland during coronavirus crisis

By Ian Duncan

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Cabinet secretary for education John Swinney.
Cabinet secretary for education John Swinney.

EDUCATION Secretary John Swinney said free school meals will continue amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

He has announced free meals will continue with local authorities making them available either through vouchers or through community hubs where the meals can be collected by families.

Social workers have also been asked to compile lists of people who are especially vulnerable, such as single parent families where the parents have become unwell.

Other vulnerable children, who have to rely on schools for a safe environment, will not be cut off, he said, and teachers will work to provide educational continuity for example by setting learning tasks or working online.

Childcare will also be provided for children whose parents work in health and social care sectors, which could mean some local authorities take the decision to keep some facilities running.

Mr Swinney acknowledged that the government does not have all the answers yet.

Highland Council said yesterday it would "take time" to work through the implications of the move to close all schools from the end of this week.

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