Highlands Secondary Schools See Significantly Improved Attainment Results In S4, S5 And S6 Sqa Awards
1st October 2020
Secondary schools in Highland saw a significant improvement in attainment results in S4, S5 and S6 SQA results in August 2020.
Chair of the Education Committee, Councillor John Finlayson, said: "I wish to congratulate our young people, their families and our school staff across Highland for the significant improvement trends in attainment in S4, S5 and S6 year groups. This is an excellent result and it is a real achievement to see our schools focus on individual young people which makes a difference at the individual, school, and council level to results and exam performance."
The initial results, released on 4 August, showed that the SQA's moderation process had led to many changes to the estimates submitted by teachers. All Highland secondary schools had instances of grades being lowered.
Despite the large number of downgrades created by the SQA's initial moderation process (nearly a quarter of all grades awarded were downgraded from the estimate), the first run of results showed increases in attainment in Highland and nationally.
Across Highland, an analysis of the initial results from 4 August showed an improvement from last year (and across a five-year trend):
49.5% of S4 students achieved five or more National 5 awards (up from 46.2% in 2019)
22.2% of S5 students achieved 5 or more Highers (up from 21.9% in 2019)
38.3% of S6 candidates achieved at least one award at Advanced Higher (up 1.2% in 2019).
On 11 August, the Deputy First Minister announced that the moderation process used by SQA would no longer be the determinant of candidate grades and that, instead, the originally estimated grades submitted would be accepted as definitive. Therefore, the effect of reverting to teacher estimates has had a significant impact on overall attainment levels across Highland.
The revised attainment results, from 11 August, of the above analysis are now:
52.1% of S4 students achieved five or more National 5 awards (up from 46.2% in 2019)
23.5% of S5 students achieved 5 or more Highers (up from 21.9% in 2019)
39.2% of S6 candidates achieved at least one award at Advanced Higher (up 1.2% in 2019).
There were also improvements to be seen for young people in SIMD Deciles 1-2, young people who are most affected by socio-economic deprivation and the attainment gap between young people who are most affected and least affect by deprivation has narrowed in 11 of the 17 key measures.
Executive Chief Officer for Education and Learning, Nicky Grant, said: "In the Highlands, a strength of ours is a curriculum that is responsive to the contribution the community can make towards the skills and attributes of young people and keeping them on track with their learner journeys. The improvement in results are a tribute to our candidates and their families, and have been achieved due to the immense efforts of our classroom teachers, our Principal Teachers, Faculty Heads and Senior Management Teams in schools."
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Members of the Caithness Committee have identified fuel poverty as their number one concern and are pleased to announce that the member-led capital housing budget has increased to 10% as they welcome £2,253,000 of investment which will be used to carry out improvements to the housing stock across the county. A specific priority of the capital programme is improving heating and make homes more energy efficient, with over £1,300,000 of budget approved to replace the oldest and most inefficient heating systems with a further £150,000 for one-off heating replacements.
Highland Council Trading Standards supports FASathon - the Friends Against Scams marathon day Highland Council Trading Standards is encouraging Highland residents to take part in ‘FASathon', the Friends Against Scams marathon day, on 21st October 2020. The aim of the FASathon campaign is to get as many people as possible to complete the free Friends Against Scams online awareness session to learn about the different types of scams and how to protect yourself and others against scams.
By intervening, Local Government has reduced the worst impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic for the most vulnerable in our communities, COSLA said today (Wednesday). COSLA also said that is why their Blueprint outlines the lead role of Local Government in securing a fair and inclusive recovery with a strong focus on human rights, tackling poverty and addressing inequalities.
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Highland Council is currently looking at options to secure the future of the lifeline ferry service at Corran Ferry, Lochaber. The local authority is responsible for operating the Corran Ferry service, which is the busiest single vessel route in Scotland.
The Highland Council would like to thank householders who have purchased a Garden Waste Collection Service permit for 2020/21. The current permit started on the 1st of September and will run until the 31st of August 2021, with collections continuing until the end of November.
The Highland Council is reminding the public that although their offices and buildings remain closed to the public a full range of support and information is still available. Access into all service point buildings continues to be currently restricted for people to complete birth registrations and other high priority registrations by appointment only, and following all current social distancing and hygiene guidance.
Additional spending powers and funding for councils. A package of financial flexibilities and extra funding for councils which could be worth up to £750 million has been agreed by the Scottish Government in partnership with COSLA.