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Aberdeen schools continue to improve


Today's [Tuesday 05 August] SQA examination results show that our young people in schools across Aberdeen have continued to perform well.

The pupils have been rewarded for completing coursework, exams and unit assessments throughout the academic year 2013/14 in a wide range of qualifications and subjects. These include Access, Intermediates, Highers and Advanced Highers – and, for the first time, the new Nationals which support Curriculum for Excellence.

There are several changes both in the qualifications and in the wider education system as a result of Curriculum for Excellence, which means that the results published today look different from previous years. The new National Courses are different from Standard Grade, with National 4 being assessed internally by schools, and National 5 being assessed externally, and comparisons cannot be like-for-like.

The pass rates for National Courses 2 to 5 for Aberdeen City Council-run schools in 2013/14 are as follows:

National 5 - 77.3%

National 4 - 93.8%

National 3 - 95.7%

National 2 - 96.0%

In 2013/14, alongside the new National Courses pupils also presented Access 2 & 3, Intermediate 1 & 2, Higher and Advanced Higher qualifications. The pass rates for these qualifications are as follows:

Access 2 - 77.8%

Access 3 - 100%

Intermediate 1 - 73.0%

Intermediate 2 - 75.4%

Higher - 76.2%

Advanced Higher - 81.2%

The Higher Grade pass is the second highest in the city since 2003 and the Advanced Higher pass rate is the second highest since the qualification was introduced in 2001.

Aberdeen City Council Leader Councillor Jenny Laing said: "We appreciate the hard work of our staff and pupils in this, the first year of the new national qualifications. The introduction of this new system means that these results set the benchmark for the years to come, and I am confident that we will continue to see improvements as the system beds-in.

"We are determined to do all that we can to encourage and support our young people to get the most out of their time at school, whether it is through gaining qualifications to go on to further education or looking at other positive destinations - we want to maximise the opportunities available to them.

"Closing the education gap remains a top priority and we will be work closely with our pupils, staff and parents to continue to improve performance."

Director of Education, Culture and Sport Gayle Gorman added: "I want to thank our teachers for their commitment and continued hard work during this challenging time of change. Their support has been crucial in helping our pupils to adapt to the new qualifications system.

"I am delighted that we have continued to make progress at Higher and Advanced Higher Grades. I am similarly delighted that our pupils have performed well in the new National qualifications."