Specialist staff such as music therapy teachers and child psychologists face restrictions in access to schools despite a return to full-time education this week.
About 698,000 children will begin returning to Scotland’s 2,500 primary and secondary schools from Wednesday.
While many will attend for just a day next week, they will be in full-time from the following Monday after plans for blended learning – a mixture of classroom and home learning – were scrapped.
However, the efforts to prevent the spread of the Covid-19 virus have hit some specialist services.
The Scottish Government has advised that movement between schools of temporary and supply teachers should be “kept to a minimum until further notice”.
The advice states: “This includes attendance at school of those who visit, such as visiting teachers, psychologists, nurses and social workers.
“Recognising the importance of holistic support for children and young people requirement to meet their needs, every effort should be made to secure these wider inputs through lower risk methods such as digital/virtual means or outdoor settings.”
Lorraine Thomson, chairwoman of Unison Scotland’s education issues group, said: “It effects a range of staff, including cleaners, out-of-school care staff and bus escorts who often have more than one job, and peripatetic workers like educational psychologists and speech therapists who can visit a range of schools in one day.”
Seamus Searson, general secretary of the Scottish Secondary Teachers’ Association, said: “It will be difficult enough to manage the return of pupils without visitors. In addition, schools will have restricted space for these people to work.
“Bringing all pupils back at one time is not the way to have managed the return to schools.”
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