Attainment gap hits record worst level

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The attainment gap between the most and least deprived primary schools pupils has increased to the worst ever level, new statistics have revealed.

The Achievement of Curriculum for Excellence Levels publication shows primary school attainment has fallen for every stage and subject.

Achievement levels are down for every stage from P1 to P7 and every subject including reading, writing, listening & talking, literacy and numeracy.

Scottish Conservative Shadow Cabinet for Education, Oliver Mundell MSP, said:

“These shocking results reveal the brutal impact on young people of Covid, which has been heightened by years of SNP failure.

“Scotland’s schools came into the pandemic unprepared after 14 years of the SNP letting standards slip.

“The double whammy of Covid and the SNP’s botched reforms have sent the attainment gap between the richest and poorest pupils spiralling to its worst ever level.

“These grim statistics show that despite the best efforts of teachers and parents, pupils across Scotland are not reaching the expected levels of attainment in reading, writing, numeracy, literacy and listening and talking.

“Dreadful results on this scale should shame Nicola Sturgeon. She promised to close the attainment gap but instead, it’s wider than ever. Education has never been her top priority and it shows.

“The SNP Government have let down a generation of children and young people.”


Scottish Government, Achievement of Curriculum for Excellence Levels 2020/21, 14 December 2021, link.

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