Thought for the day 30 January

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Another recurring question is: ‘when will the schools go back?’ There seem to be different opinions among government advisers about the role played by schools in transmission of the disease. Whilst children are probably not at high risk of contracting it, there seems to be some link between schools being open and increased transmission (but they are maybe not certain exactly what that is?). Meanwhile parents and carers are struggling to cope with home schooling, and juggling that with trying to carry on with their own work. Teachers and educationalists are worried about the long-term impact of children being away from school for so long, both on their educational attainment and their general social skills and well-being. Children and teenagers are reacting to the situation in different ways – some are putting in a lot of effort to achieve longer-term goals, others are not engaging with online schooling, and are showing signs of missing interaction with peers/ engagement with sport etc. And teachers are under great pressure – trying to prepare material for those who are in school (children of key workers, and from ‘vulnerable’ families) and those who are at home. Let’s remember them all and their different, but related, needs

Lord, we pray for all associated with the education system – children/teenagers, parents/carers, teachers and educationalists. Give them the physical and mental strength to keep going, to feel that their effort is both of value, and valued. Be with them when they are struggling, and help them to find appropriate help and support

PS In May 1787 Robert Burns crossed the Border, and in a week walked from Coldstream to Newcastle, on to Carlisle and back over the border to Annan. For the next wee while we’ll have some pictures of places that he visited on his journey
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