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National strike action affecting schools

Information on strike action in Secondary schools on Thursday 8 December (latest update 5 December)

  • National strike action by members of the SSTA and NASUWT teaching unions is taking place on Thursday 8 December. This will result in a significant reduction in staffing levels within schools
  • All West Lothian secondary schools are expected to close to S1 to S4 pupils on Thursday 8 December (The only exception to this is Winchburgh Academy, which will be open for S1 pupils only)
  • Arrangements are being made to allow as many S5 and S6 pupils as possible to attend schools, as normal, to minimise disruption to those preparing for SQA exams
  • Some secondary schools in West Lothian will be able to accommodate both S5 & S6 pupils but other secondary schools will only be able to accommodate S6 pupils. This is due to a significant reduction in staffing levels within individual schools and subject to change
  • All parents/carers of secondary school pupils will today (Monday 5 December) receive further information on the arrangements for their child/children directly from their school
  • All West Lothian primary schools and early learning centres will be open as normal. Parents/carers will be contacted direct if there any issues with individual classes as a result of the strike action.

Schools for pupils with Additional Support Needs will be closed for secondary pupils S1 to S6, with the exception of Beatlie School Campus and S6 pupils at Cedarbank School, who should attend as normal. All primary pupils should attend as normal.

National negotiations are still ongoing, and if they are able to reach an agreement, it is possible that strike action could be called off.

In this event, we will notify you as soon as possible via groupcall, with updates on the council's website and social media. If the planned strike action goes ahead, the following arrangements will also be in place:

  • School buses will run as normal to allow any pupils attending school to travel.
  • Pupils will still be able to access previous learning materials online, through Microsoft Teams, to study/consolidate prior learning
  • A £3 per pupil payment will be made to pupils affected by the strike who are entitled to free school meals or in receipt of the clothing grant. This should be in bank accounts by Tuesday 13 December.
  • Packed lunches will be available to collect from any West Lothian secondary school between 11am and 12.30pm for any pupils affected by the strike action who require access to food.

I appreciate that further industrial action will cause significant disruption to the learning of our children and young people, and many of you will now need to have alternative arrangements in place during these days.

Please accept my apologies for any inconvenience this may cause.


Yours sincerely,


Dr Elaine Cook

Depute Chief Executive