Nicola Sturgeon: The time for easing Scotland's lockdown 'is not now'

The Scottish First Minister spoke as the Scottish Government published an update to its framework for easing coronavirus restrictions.

While she said ministers were working towards "careful and gradual changes" to the lockdown restrictions, she also stressed this would only happen "when we judge it is safe to make them, which I am afraid is not right now".

With the current restrictions due to be reviewed on Thursday, Ms Sturgeon said it was "highly unlikely" any significant changes would be made at this time.

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While she said "real progress" was being made, particularly with regard to the number of patients requiring intensive care treatment, she added "that progress is still fragile".

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon.

She warned changes could "quickly see transmission of the virus increase again".

On the issue of schools, Ms Sturgeon said an "education recovery group" was "considering different options for how pupils might gradually return to school".

She said: "I need to be clear, a return to school might not be possible at all this side of the summer holidays.

"But we are considering whether some groups of students, such as vulnerable children, children who are making the transition from primary to secondary school, or who are studying for national qualifications could return to school ahead of others."

When schools do go back, Ms Sturgeon said it was likely pupils would combine some time in the classroom with continued learning at home.

She stated: "For example, it is possible different groups could attend school part-time, in blocks of a few days, or a week at a time, to enable physical distancing and deep cleaning of schools between sessions."

Ms Sturgeon told parents: "I want to be crystal clear that while we take the greatest care in all of this, that is particularly the case in schools. we will not compromise the safety of your children."

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