Schools and nurseries will remain closed to the majority of pupils at least until the middle of next month.
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon made the announcement during her address to MSPs on Tuesday.
A review of the decision will be made on 2nd February.
The Scottish government had previously planned to allow schools to return at the beginning of next month.
Ms Sturgeon said it was “a priority for all of us to get children back to normal schooling as soon as possible”.
She added she appreciated the work of school staff and understood how “challenging and stressful” the current circumstances are for families.
“Our reluctant judgment is that the community transmission of the virus is too high to allow a safe return to school on 1st February.”
She said she hoped a phased return to school could be possible.