On the eve of an extended vaccine rollout, Covid-19 related school absences took a slight dip across the north and north-east.
All council areas in the region saw a decrease in the percentage of absences caused by Covid-19 since last week.
But the latest numbers from the Scottish Government show that there are still close to 4,800 pupils absent due to self-isolation or a positive test.
And the pandemic is having a varied effect on staff members across the region.
What are the latest Covid-19 absence numbers?
Highland Council has the highest percentage of absences caused by Covid-19, with 6.7%.
But the most recent numbers are from the end of last week since September 13 and 14 were in-service days for Highland schools.
Still, Highland and all of the other mainland council areas are currently below last week’s reports.
The percentages are sporadic in the island councils, where small pupil rolls cause pronounced changes in the case of an outbreak.
What was the situation this time last year?
Looking back on statistics from the fifth week of the 2020 school year, only Moray is in a slightly better position than this time last year.
The Delta variant continues to prove its ability to spread within schools.
How is Covid-19 affecting staff absences?
The Scottish Government also tracks how many teachers and other members of staff are absent for Covid-19 related reasons. Staff absences have ebbed and flowed in the past month. Although Aberdeen City and Aberdeenshire’s staff absences have risen, there has been a recent dip in the north.
The UK Government recently announced that young people aged 12 and older can receive a first dose of the Covid-19 vaccine beginning Monday September 20.