Schools across Scotland are to remain closed as the country enters a new period of national lockdown.

Fears over the rise of a new strain of coronavirus have lead to the decision to close the doors of all nursery, primary and secondary schools. 

The First Minister said that of all the decisions she had to take surrounding the new lockdown, closing schools was the most defficuly, whose impact was the "most severe". 

Dumbarton and Vale of Leven Reporter: School classroom

How long will schools be closed?

Nursery, primary and secondary schools  - currently shut for the Christmas holidays - will remain closed until February 1 at the earliest.  

Are any pupils exempt?

As before, children classed as vulnerable and those of key workers will still be able to attend schools.

These 'hub schools' will be down to individual local authorities. 

What happens next?

The situation will be reviewed on January 18, and every two weeks thereafter. But it is unlikely schools will reopen before February 1.

From January 11, pupils will be able to access online learning and continue lessons at home, though the exact provision is down to each local authority.

Dumbarton and Vale of Leven Reporter: School kids walking

What did the First Minister say? 

Ms Sturgeon said: “Just as the last places we ever want to close are schools and nurseries, so it is the case that schools and nurseries will be the first places we want to reopen as we re-emerge from this latest lockdown.

“They remain our priority.”

The First Minister also said that work was being done to see if school and childcare staff could be made a priority for vaccination.