Newspapers in Scotland have compiled league tables based on exam results released by the Scottish Government which illustrate a gap between schools in affluent areas and those in more deprived parts of the country. This is from the Scotsman..
…The figures, which are compiled annually by The Scotsman using data from the Scottish Government, allow state schools to be ranked based on the percentage of the S4 roll who go on to pass five or more Highers in S5.
Once again, the league tables illustrate the gap between schools in affluent areas and those in more deprived parts of the country.
While more than half of pupils leave the best-performing schools in East Renfrewshire – a largely prosperous local authority to the south of Glasgow – with five Highers or more, there are secondaries in parts of Scotland’s largest cities where not one child secured a similar result. Across the country as a whole, 13 per cent of pupils achieved five Highers or more in S5, the same proportion as last year.
In East Renfrewshire, that figure was 39 per cent, with 141 S5 pupils achieving five Higher passes at grade A.
East Renfrewshire’s director of education, Mhairi Shaw, said: “These results are a testimony to the phenomenal success of East Renfrewshire’s education service in never resting on our laurels and always striving for improvement.
“Everyone who contributes day in, day out across our schools to nurture and develop the young people should be proud of our achievements, and we are looking towards how we can build on these successes in the future.”
…Common among all the best-performing secondaries was the relatively low numbers of children receiving free school meals, one of the few indicators of the level of deprivation of a school catchment area…
Larry Flanagan, general-secretary of the Educational Institute of Scotland, the country’s largest teaching union, said: “Merely looking at exam results, with no thought given to the particular circumstances in which any school operates, is a flawed approach that produces highly questionable results.
“Deprivation continues to impact adversely on the attainment of too many pupils and this is an area which needs to be addressed as we move forward with full implementation of Curriculum for Excellence.”
The Scottish Government said it believed ranking schools based on exam results alone was “an inappropriate method” for establishing performance.
Learning minister Alasdair Allan added: “While there will always be variations in how schools perform on an annual basis, the Programme for International Student Assessment figures released by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development earlier this month not only showed a strong overall performance in Scotland, but also that we were beginning to address the attainment gap.
“This year has also seen Scotland’s best ever exam pass rates and 91.4 per cent of school leavers are now in positive destinations such as employment, college or higher education.”
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