Statement regarding Coronavirus (COVID-19)

The ongoing situation with COVID-19 has had an impact on the First Minister’s Reading Challenge. Please refer to the information below to find out how different aspects of the programme have been affected.

Supporting you during lockdown

While schools and libraries are closed, our resources, webinars, inspiration and support are still available. In such a difficult time for staff, pupils and their families, reading for pleasure can help support our mental health and wellbeing - you can read more about this in our blog from librarian and researcher Jennifer Horan.

If you are looking for tips and ideas to help you sustain your reading culture at this time, these resources created during the initial lockdown may be useful to you:

If you are looking for resources to use with your pupils remotely, all of our resources are available to download and share with your pupils. Please register for the Reading Challenge if you have not already done so to gain access to the resources. Our reading passports are now also available digitally - both for groups and for individual pupils - helping to provide pupils with a sense of continuity in tracking their reading.

The Home Activities Hub on the Scottish Book Trust website is perfect to signpost to parents and families as it features a great variety of activities for children of all ages.

If you have any questions, you can contact us at

Funding programmes

Schools, libraries and community groups who received funding through our Inspiring Classrooms, Creative Workshops, Library and Community Funds for the school year 2019-2020 may be impacted in different ways:

  • If you had to cancel a session with an author or other creative practitioner because of the virus with less than a week’s notice, the author or creative practitioner should still be paid and Scottish Book Trust will cover this payment. Authors and creative practitioners should invoice us for this payment.
  • The time period for using the funding was extended, with additional terms and conditions agreed to cover digital events. The revised deadline has now passed, but please get in touch with us if you have been unable to use your funding to discuss options on how best to use the money to support your learners. 

The deadline for applying to our 2020-2021 funding programmes has now passed. If your school, library or community group submitted an application, please note that the panel has now met, and all applicants will be notified of the decision by email week commencing 18 January 2021. 


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