MSPs call for urgent relief for Outdoor Learning

Cross-party MSPs have written to the Scottish Government calling for an urgent £3m to save Outdoor Learning Centres, after it emerged these vital resources face closure.

Scottish Outdoor Education Centres have entered crisis talks with administrators due to the impact of Coronavirus and have told MSPs they urgently require £3m to avoid multiple closures and job losses.

Although schools have reopened, official guidance prevents them making overnight educational trips, which has had a devastating impact on the sector.

A letter calling for £3m emergency funding with immediate effect has been signed by MSPs from all five parties represented at Holyrood.

Commenting, Scottish Greens health spokesperson Alison Johnstone said: “Outdoor learning is vital for the development, health and wellbeing of pupils. It provides opportunities for some young people to connect with Scotland’s natural environment that they simply wouldn’t get otherwise.

“Scotland has a proud legacy of outdoor education, but that legacy is under very immediate threat. The Scottish Government needs to step in urgently.”

Signatories include Alison Johnstone, Liz Smith, Andy Wightman, Johann Lamont, Claire Baker, Colin Smyth, Brian Whittle, Maurice Corry, Jeremy Balfour and Bruce Crawford.