POLITICIANS are calling for a meeting with Fife Council's director of education, Carrie Lindsay, about the plans to re-open schools.

Mid Scotland and Fife MSP Claire Baker, Cowdenbeath MSP Annabelle Ewing and Mid Fife and Glenrothes MSP Jenny Gilruth have all voiced concerns about the proposals for children returning to classrooms in August.

The plans for blended learning will see reduced numbers of pupils in attendance each day in line with social distancing requirements but a number of parents have contacted politicians and councillors to raise issues.

Ms Baker said: "I appreciate that local authorities are facing a huge challenge in preparing for a return to limited in-school learning but they must also respond to the concerns being raised in their communities.

"Families need the time to plan for reduced school hours and many will need to reorganise working hours and find additional childcare in line with the new school arrangements. "Parents and pupils are anxious about the potential impact of significantly reduced in-school hours on the quality of education delivered, and we have already seen evidence of the variation in home-based education."

She added: “I have called for a meeting between Fife Council’s education department and all local MSPs and hope this can be swiftly arranged.

"With the school holidays fast approaching, we need to act now to provide reassurances to parents and pupils on how the new arrangements will work and how the quality of education will be maintained.”

Ms Ewing said: “I am intensely aware of some very serious issues regarding the education of children in my constituency. I am very keen to meet with the director of education to discuss the concerns that have been raised with me.

“These concerns are not, of course, restricted to the Cowdenbeath constituency, I know, for instance, that my colleague Jenny Gilruth has also expressed concerns.

“The safe return of pupils to school is, of course, an incredibly difficult project to manage with the parameters changing as the situation regarding Covid-19 alters.

"It throws up such a huge range of concerns for our constituents that a meeting – online or socially distanced – involving all interested MSPs, might be the best way to proceed.”