First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has given her strongest signal yet that she will announce a full-time return to schooling.
Speaking at the Scottish Government’s coronavirus briefing on Wednesday, she said the decision “won’t go in the opposite direction”.
But Ms Sturgeon said she did not want to pre-empt her announcement, which is due before the Scottish Parliament on Thursday.
The First Minister’s Cabinet met on Wednesday morning to discuss the decision, but she told the briefing: “I’m duty-bound to announce these decisions to Parliament and I’m going to do that at the risk of getting into trouble from the Presiding Officer.
“I think you know where we’re trying to get to on schools and you’ve probably not heard anything from me today that suggests we’re going in the opposite direction but I’ll announce the detail of those decisions tomorrow.”
Earlier in the briefing, the First Minister said expected alterations to schooling and shielding “is not going to leave us very much room for immediate changes” elsewhere.
Results of a review of lockdown measures will be revealed to the Scottish Parliament on Thursday.
“We can’t just look at whether an individual change is safe, although that’s an important part of our consideration,” Ms Sturgeon said.
“We also have to consider the cumulative impact of all of the changes we make and we have to be sensible in the order in which we make changes so we don’t create a situation where we are doing too much, too quickly and therefore giving the virus the chance to overwhelm us again.”
The First Minister said she expects people and businesses to be disappointed if their sector is not reopening as quickly as they would like, saying she is “sorry” that could be the case.
She added: “Where we are unable to move to a further opening up tomorrow, we will indicate, as far as we can, indicative dates for the future – even though they will be conditional on continued suppression of the virus.”