10.5 C

Exam Marks Are Up, Will Pocket Money Follow?


Early indications show there has been a positive increase in attainment as over 9,000 pupils across Edinburgh received their results from the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA) today (Tuesday 9 August). Parents are yet to confirm about the pocket money.

Attainment has improved considerably when compared to three years ago when exams were last held with different assessment models being used last year and in 2020.

A total of 47,806 resulted awards were certificated for 9,022 candidates (includes special schools, adults and mainstream secondary pupils) in over 81 subjects ranging from Accounting to Travel and Tourism.

National 5s saw passes (A-C grades) of 79% (up 4 percentage points from 2019) and Highers saw passes of 81% (up 5 percentage points from 2019). Both categories saw falls compared to last year but this was mirrored nationally where there was also a drop across the country. A further standout statistic was the number of one or more Advanced Higher passes of 32% – the highest result on record.

Notable successes include:

  • By the end of S4, 49% achieved 5 passes at National 5 or better – a 6 percentage point improvement from 2019
  • By the end of S5, 63% achieved 1 or more Higher passes (A-C) – a 6 percentage improvement from 2019
  • By the end of S6, 70% achieved 1 or more pass at Higher passes (A-C) – a 4 percentage point improvement from 2019

Shashank Swarna, Head Boy and an S6 pupil at Currie Community High School, achieved two A’s and a B in his Biology, Chemistry and Mathematics Advanced Highers respectively and is planning on studying medicine at Aberdeen University. He said:

I’m absolutely delighted with my results and excited to continue my studies at Aberdeen. My first exam experience was nerve-wracking, but I would really like to thank the school for helping me prepare.

Councillor Joan Griffiths, Education Convener for the City of Edinburgh Council, said:

The past three years have been extremely challenging for pupils and teaching staff in all our schools battling the impact of the pandemic on learning and teaching. This year was the first time since 2019 that our young people in our secondary schools have sat exams and I can’t praise them highly enough for all their hard work and achievements.

You have to remember that for many this was the first time they have experienced the pressure of exams and to see such improvements in results across the board compared to 2019 shows how resilient they have been to everything thrown at them.

Praise must go to all our teachers and staff who worked extremely hard in preparing pupils for these exams, parents/carers for their support and most of all our young people themselves. The learner journey for every individual is different and there is no wrong pathway. Being at school is about ensuring all individuals are able to fulfil their potential by attaining the highest level of achievements possible and by receiving the best possible experience.

Setting high standards for teaching and learning through the Edinburgh Teachers’ Charter is already paying dividends and we look forward to building on the success of these learners as they move through the senior phase and onto positive destinations.

Additional information – analysis:

Results by end of S4

5 passes at National 5 or better – 49% (6 percentage points up on 2019).
Results by end of S5*
1+ pass at Higher or better – 63% (6 percentage points up on 2019)
3+ passes Higher or better – 44% (6 percentage points up on 2019)
5+ passes at Higher or better – 24% (4 percentage points up on 2019)
*based on the percentage of S4 pupil roll.

Results by end of S6*
1+ pass at Higher or better – 70% (4 percentage points up on 2019)
3+ passes Higher or better – 53% (4 percentage points up on 2019)
5+ passes at Higher or better – 40% (4 percentage points up on 2019)
1+ pass at Advanced Higher – 32% (the highest result on record)
*based on the percentage of S4 pupil roll.

In 2020 the SQA required schools to use teacher judgement regarding attainment and last year the Alternative Certification Model was adopted. This required demonstrated attainment based on assessments delivered by staff in school. Both of these models replaced the formal SQA exams.

Penguin celebrating exam results
Ed Baker
Ed Baker
Ed keeps the local news going at Edinburgh Magazine. To submit content that qualifies for free publication, or to enquire about guest posts & press releases, get in touch at Firefly Magazines.

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