Lobby the Minister

Created on: 17 Mar 2022 | Last modified: 21 Mar 2022

The Scottish Government has announced a “Test & Protect Transition Plan” that will lead to changes to Covid testing regimes in wider society including schools.

These changes are to be introduced in steps from the new summer term onwards and includes requiring schools to stop providing LFTs to teachers for asymptomatic testing. The EIS believes that this would have a detrimental impact on teacher confidence and absence rates, as schools are a high-risk environment for covid transmission – as can be seen by the current record levels of Covid related absence.

The EIS has asked Cabinet Secretary Shirley-Anne Somerville to change the ‘Plan’, by maintaining asymptomatic Lateral Flow testing. Ms Somerville has turned down our request.

EIS members are invited to email Cabinet Secretary Shirley-Anne Somerville directly to urge her to change the Scottish Government decision on asymptomatic LFTs in schools by maintaining the current testing regime.

Suggested text to copy & paste for an email to Ms Somerville:

“Dear Ms Somerville

I write to you as the Minister with the responsibility for education to ask you to ensure that asymptomatic Lateral Flow Testing remains in schools for staff, contrary to the plans set out in the Government’s “Test & Protect Transition Plan”.

Schools have significant footfalls in concentrated periods of time, a large number of households mixing and prolonged close contact within teaching areas making them a high-risk environment for covid transmission – as can be seen by the current record levels of Covid related absence.

For pupils to prosper, teacher absences need to be as low as possible. Teachers need to have the confidence of knowing whether they have Covid or another illness; this is best done by keeping an effective testing regime with LFTs.

I urge you to ensure that the existing LFT regimes and resources are kept place.

Yours sincerely”

Please send your email to the following email address: scottish.ministers@gov.scot