School Leaver Attainment And Destinations
23rd February 2021
Scotland's Chief Statistician today published statistics on the initial destinations and attainment of 2019-20 school leavers.
The statistics show the proportion of 2019-20 school leavers attaining National Qualifications at different Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework (SCQF) levels. The results show that:
95.8% of school leavers gained one pass or more at SCQF Level 4 (e.g. National 4) or better;
85.7% of school leavers gained one pass or more at SCQF Level 5 (e.g. National 5) or better;
63.9% of school leavers gained one pass or more at SCQF Level 6 (e.g. Higher) or better;
23.2% of school leavers gained one pass or more at SCQF Level 7 (e.g. Advanced Higher) or better;
The results also show that 93.3% of 2019-20 school leavers were in a positive destination three months after leaving school, a decrease from 95.0% in 2018-19. Positive destinations include higher education, further education, employment, training, personal skills development and voluntary work.
Compared to the previous year (2018-19) there was an increase in the proportion of leavers in Higher Education, from 40.3% to 44.2%, and an increase in the proportion in Further Education from 27.3% to 28.1%. The proportion of school leavers who were in employment fell from 22.9% to 16.2%, while the proportion that were unemployed increased from 4.5% to 6.0% in 2019-20.
The time period covered by these statistics means that the results will be affected by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. In particular, the different certification approach for National Qualifications in 2020 (teacher estimates) will have affected the final year of attainment for 2019-20 school leavers. Destination figures for 2019-20 relate to activity as at October 2020 and may therefore reflect any impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on both the choices made by pupils and the opportunities available to them upon leaving school.