‘Marginal’ progress on closing attainment gap between rich and poor

The Herald reports that pupils from the poorest backgrounds in Scotland have improved their exam results, but progress is marginal, new figures show.

Data from the 2017 exam diet indicates that the most disadvantaged pupils have seen a two per cent increase in their attainment compared to the most affluent communities where achievement has remained the same.

However, the scale of the gap remains significant with disadvantaged pupils achieving around half of the qualifications secured by the most affluent.

The figures, published on the website of school support and inspection body Education Scotland, also highlight the individual performance of schools.

The figures on the attainment gap, which the Scottish Government has made a priority of closing, were given a cautious welcome by John Swinney, the Education Secretary.

He said: “Education is this government’s number one priority and we are investing heavily to ensure every child has an equal chance to succeed.

Liberal Democrat education spokesman Tavish Scott said: “Despite declaring it their main priority three years ago, the SNP Government has moved sluggishly on closing the attainment gap.”

The data on the attainment gap shows pupils in the poorest fifth of neighbourhoods secured an average tariff points score of 635 in school exams compared to 1,219 for the most affluent fifth.

Read more ‘Marginal’ progress on closing attainment gap between rich and poor

Please tell us your thoughts in comments or via Twitter ~ Tamsin

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