Local authorities across Tayside and Fife have welcomed pupils back to school after five months away.
Tens of thousands of pupils were able to see their friends and teachers inside the classroom on Wednesday for the first time since lockdown.
Pupils are being phased back into schools to allow them to familiarise themselves with changes including enhanced hygiene measures and one way systems.
Several schools in Fife were closed on Wednesday due to flooding, however Councillor Fay Sinclair, education and children’s services convener, welcomed pupils.
She said: “I’m delighted that we’re finally able to welcome back our children and young people to school.
“The last few months haven’t been easy juggling, work, home schooling and adjusting to life in lockdown, so I’m sure that everyone is looking forward to things feeling a bit more ‘normal’ again.”
Schools and nurseries in the kingdom have been individually risk assessed before reopening to ensure children and staff were safe.
Carrie Lindsay, executive director for education and children’s services, thanked staff for getting schools back up and running.
She said: “Things have been very different for all of us over the last few months and now we are keen to learn together again.
“Staff from across Fife Council have worked tirelessly to make sure our schools are ready to open safely today. I’d like to thank everyone involved for making this possible.”
She also urged families not to send children to school if they have coronavirus symptoms.
Thousands of pupils across Angus were welcomed back to school on Wednesday.
Councillor Derek Wann, children and learning convener, said staff would be on hand to support pupils following a turbulent few months.
He said: “I am delighted to welcome everyone back at the start of the new school year.
“Although not everyone will be in as we phase in returning this week to give children the chance to find out about the new additional hygiene and distancing methods in place, I’m sure everyone is looking forward to starting back and all being together when in full time next week.
“I’d also like to extend a warm welcome to all of the new children and their families who are joining us this year.
“This year is a new experience for everyone involved. School is so important in the lives of our children, not just for education and attainment reasons, but for their social development and general wellbeing.
“After being out of school for five months our first priority is making schools safe and welcoming places. Our teachers and schools will be there to ensure this is happening and to offer support to pupils with the transition.”
Councillor Stewart Hunter sent a welcome back message to pupils attending schools in Dundee.
Many city schools invited in younger pupils to allow make their transition from nursery and primary school easier.
Mr Hunter, who is children and families convener, told pupils: “I just want to take this opportunity to welcome back our pupils at school.
I know the last few months have been difficult and challenging, but I hope you’re all looking forward to being back at school, seeing your friends, teachers and getting back to learning.
“In particular for our new primary ones and our new first years, this is an exciting time for you starting off at a new school.
“We just want to say good luck and welcome back.”
With schools and nurseries reopening their doors this morning, children and families service convener Stewart Hunter is sending a "welcome back" message to pupils and is asking them to stay safe. Listen below. #DundeeLearning #WelcomeBackDundee pic.twitter.com/J8ON9eBbQR
— Dundee City Council (@DundeeCouncil) August 12, 2020
Mr Hunter said safety was a priority for Dundee City Council’s schools and asked pupils’ to follow new measures which have been put in place in individual schools.
Perth and Kinross
Perth and Kinross Council are paying tribute to pupils, teachers and parents who have faced “unprecedented challenges” during lockdown.
Perth Bridge will be lit up each day this week in dedication to different groups affected by school closures.
Celebrating staff, the council wrote: “Tonight we celebrate and thank all of our staff who work in our schools, whatever their role; we appreciated all of your efforts to continue to deliver the very best learning experience possible.”
All this week we are dedicating the lights on Perth Bridge to those who have faced an unprecedented challenge in regards to schooling over the last few months. Throughout this week the lights will be dedicated to a different group who have been impacted by the school closures. pic.twitter.com/aSNyU1hlR5
— Perth & Kinross Council (@PerthandKinross) August 10, 2020