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Sturgeon ‘owes every young person an apology’ for education failure, Labour says

Official statistics show 2.1 per cent drop in A to C grades at National 5 level compared to last year

NICOLA STURGEON owes every young person in Scotland an apology, Labour said today as new figures showed a fall in high attainment at school.

Official statistics from the Scottish Qualifications Authority showed that the number of higher grades at A to C compared with last year.

There was a 2.1 per cent drop in A to C grades at National 5 level, and the number of passes at National 4 fell from 93.8 per cent to 92.2 per cent.

Other awards saw slight rises or stagnation. The number of Advanced Higher passes at A to C rose slightly from 80.4 in 2017 to 80.8 in 2018.

Scottish Labour education spokesman Iain Gray said: “The SNP should be utterly ashamed of these figures.

“Young people are being failed and opportunities are being cut off by the mess this government is making of education.”

In 2015, the First Minister said education should be the Scottish government’s top priority.

“Let me be clear, I want to be judged on this,” she said at the time.

“If you are not, as First Minister, prepared to put your neck on the line on the education of our young people, then what are you prepared to. It really matters.”

But attainment in Scottish Highers has fallen every year since then.

Mr Gray added: “Nicola Sturgeon owes every young person an apology. The First Minister’s promise of education being a sacred responsibility just looks like cheap spin.”

Only 156 pupils took the Scottish baccalaureate this year, down from 161 in 2017. The controversial exam was pushed by the SNP as a way to champion modern languages and science. Passes fell from 86.3 per cent in 2017 to 78.2 per cent this year.


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