New figures published about school leavers have added another black mark to the SNP’s record on schools, local MSP Jackie Baillie has said.

Data published by the Scottish Government this week shows: 

  • The gap between the richest and the poorest going on to ‘positive destinations’ after school has grown.
  • The percentage of school leavers going on to either further or higher education has fallen.
  • The number of school leavers going on to non-positive destinations has grown. 

A positive destination is defined as a school leaver moving on to further education, employment or training.

The Times Educational Supplement Scotland has previously reported that the Scottish Government includes jobs on zero-hours contracts as ‘positive destinations’.

Jackie said the figures showed the urgent need for more investment in schools, particularly for the poorest pupils.

Jackie said:

“These figures are yet another black mark against the SNP’s record on education.

“Nicola Sturgeon promised to make education her top priority. Instead the gap between the richest and the poorest has grown as opportunities for school leavers are closed off. The real picture will be even worse than the figures suggest because the Scottish Government counts zero-hours contracts as a ‘positive destination’.

“Young people, especially those from the poorest backgrounds in Dumbarton, Vale of Leven, Helensburgh and Lomond, are being failed by an SNP government which has made a mess of education policy in Scotland.

“This cannot go on. The SNP needs to urgently recognise the damage that a decade of destructive cuts has made to our education system.

“That’s why Labour continues to make the case to use the new powers of the Scottish Parliament to stop the cuts and invest in schools instead

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