East Lothian Council's Head of Education and Children's Services has written to staff and families to thank them for their support since schools returned in August.

Lesley Brown's letter, which will be shared by email with families through their schools, reads:

Dear Families,

As we approach the start of the October school holiday, I wanted to take a moment to reflect on the considerable achievements of the past few months and to say thank you to our children, young people, staff and families for all that you have done since the start of the new school session.

There is no doubt that as schools reopened in August, we felt a combination of excitement and anticipation alongside a degree of anxiety at what may lie ahead. Whilst lots has changed in relation to the health and safety aspects in our schools, many of the essential elements of what makes East Lothian schools so great have not. These include our shared commitment to getting it right for every child, the strong relationships that have been built between our staff, children, families and communities and the ways in which we connect with each other.

Since August, our school staff have continued to put children and young people first, and families have shown incredible support and resilience – there is no doubt that one of the hallmarks of our approach has been a strong team approach – something that will be essential as we move forward in the coming weeks and months. I am incredibly proud of the commitment shown by everyone involved.

As well as continuing in day-to-day activities we have seen our school staff transform how they work to continue to offer new ways for children and young people to engage in creative and innovative learning experiences, for example the outstanding performance of ‘Lass of the Loch’ by our Instrumental Music Service working with RAF Music. In addition, our central teams in education and children’s services and across other Council areas continue to go above and beyond in our shared endeavour to support all children and families and for that I am very grateful.

Alongside our staff, I must also pay tribute to our parent councils and wider parent forums who have also continued to provide vital support to schools and families, and have ensured that the focus on school improvement and community remains strong.

As we close for the October holiday, we are all reminded that the virus has not gone away. We continue to ask that parents alert the Head Teacher of your child’s school if your child tests positive for COVID-19. We are also asking that everyone remains vigilant and remembers the FACTS:

Follow FACTS

Thank you to everyone who has contributed to all that we have achieved since August. I hope that you all enjoy a restful break and we look forward to welcoming everyone back to our schools after the holidays.

Yours sincerely,

Lesley Brown

Head of Education and Children’s Services

Published: Thursday, 15th October 2020