NICOLA Sturgeon has been urged to rethink and let parents attend nursery graduation ceremonies.

The events will begin to take place this week but parents are being told they cannot attend even when the graduation is socially distanced and outside.

Scottish Labour wants the First Minister to change her mind and let parents attend after Scotland’s Children’s Commissioner Bruce Adamson joined the National Day Nurseries Association and others in calling for the guidance to be reviewed.

Labour wants Ms Sturgeon to announce a change tomorrow.

The party's health and Covid recovery spokesperson, Jackie Baillie, has raised the case of her constituent, 32-year-old Emma Gildea, who has been banned from attending her four-year-old daughter Remy’s graduation ceremony.

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Ms Gildea said: “I feel like the Scottish Government has completely failed my family – this was the one chance that both my husband and I would have had to see her together at nursery.

“We have worked so hard through the pandemic to keep our family safe and follow all the guidelines, just one of us dropping Remy off on her first day was heartbreaking.

“How can we possibly tell our children we are now not allowed to attend to watch their graduation which they have been practicing so hard for but meanwhile there are 6,000 fans in the Uefa fanzone?

“It’s absolutely unacceptable and there is no logic to it. Please Nicola let parents and children have this moment after a difficult year.”

Ms Baillie warned that “people really don’t understand the lack of consistency from the Scottish Government”.

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She added: “How is it safe to permit 6,000 fans coming together in Glasgow, but not socially distanced graduations for parents and children?

“These rules rely on public confidence to work but these apparent inconsistencies make it more difficult for people to understand why they are being asked not to do certain things.

“That is why Scottish Labour is asking Nicola Sturgeon to change these rules immediately and give parents back this little moment of hope after a very difficult 18 months.

“If she refuses then the least the public deserve is the detailed scientific rationale that explains why socially distanced drinking is safe but socially distanced clapping is unacceptable.”

Scottish Conservative MSP Meghan Gallacher has written to the First Minister asking for guidance to be revised after speaking to donzesn of angry parents.

Ms Gallacher's appeal includes nursery/school graduations and sports days to be allowed to take place outside only, suggests that events could be limited to small groups of parents in attendance, with public health experts determining the specific number.

Her letter adds that if it is deemed necessary for the events to go ahead, attendees could be required to continue wearing face masks outside. 

Any attendees capable of taking a Covid test beforehand could be asked to do so.

Under the plans, should large number of parents wish to attend, events could be staggered with allocated timeslots, potentially over multiple days, offered to parents so they can watch their child participate or receive their certificate.

Ms Gallacher, who is the Conseratives's spokesperson for children and young people, said: “Parents and children have missed out on a number of precious moments they won’t get back over the last year. When the vaccine scheme is so successful, they shouldn’t be forced to miss out on any more.

“Days of celebration like nursery graduations and sports days are cherished moments and key parts of a child’s development."

She added: “Parents and guardians are understandably furious that while 6,000 people can attend the Euro fan zone, their children will miss out on a small celebration. The inconsistency in the guidance is causing real frustration.

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“Many graduations have already been cancelled and more are at risk of being scrapped or proceeding without parents’ involvement.

“To try and save these events, I have written to Nicola Sturgeon with proposed revisions to the guidance, which could easily be introduced immediately.

“I urge the First Minister to reconsider and adopt these suggestions, for the benefit of parents, guardians and young people all over the country.”

Last week, Deputy First Minister John Swinney told MSPs that the guidance means it “would generally currently not be permitted” for parents to attend nurseries or nursery grounds.

He added: “Obviously, that advice is available to local authorities and through the work that is undertaken in the education recovery group.

“A number of early learning and childcare settings are bringing forward alternative ways in which they can celebrate those landmark moments, which do not involve groups of parents gathering at settings.”