By Rab Bruce’s Spider

Do you remember the furore when schools were closed in the first lock down back in March? The Scottish Government were accused of harming children’s education and mental wellbeing.

When they announced that they were planning Blended Learning for when schools returned after the summer holidays, there were protests from opposition MSPs who insisted this was not good enough and that schools needed to re-open in full.

Now the schools have re-opened, the same people who demanded they be fully open now seem to be angry because of the health risk.

It’s almost as if the Scottish Government will be attacked no matter what they do. Who knew?

Now, I am sure many teachers will have a view on how safe it is to operate in class. What I hope is that schools themselves have introduced measures to mitigate the risk of transmission without needing to be told what to do by the Government. I am sure many of them are doing this already, but I have yet to hear one positive suggestion from opposition MSPs or anyone in the media as to how things could be improved to ensure the safety of teachers, staff and pupils. It’s all very well to say, "This is not good enough", but you really need to have some suggestions as to how the situation could be improved. If you are now calling for schools to be closed, what are your proposals for continuing children’s education?

On a slightly different note, I see Richard Leonard has been tweeting about the radical and decisive policies Labour will introduce to tackle poverty. I applaud his sentiments, but I have yet to hear him elaborate on exactly what these radical and decisive measures will be. Considering that a great many issues such as drugs abuse, health and education are all symptoms of poverty, tackling this should indeed be a priority, but without all the economic levers at their disposal, I’m not sure what it is Richard Leonard plans to do. As with the issue of schools being open during a pandemic, I hope to hear some positive suggestions soon, but I won’t hold my breath.