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Commenting on the publication of the Scottish exam results, Chris Keates, General Secretary (Acting) of the NASUWT-The Teachers’ Union, said:

“Yet again we have another outstanding set of exam results which are a testament to the hard work of pupils and the dedication and commitment of their teachers.

“While there has been some small variation in the Higher pass rate this is likely to be the consequence of the removal of unit assessments and changes to examinations which have come into force this year. The impact of these changes will need to be closely monitored going forward to ensure that standards are being maintained and pupils are not being disadvantaged by changes to the way in which the qualifications are structured.

“It is positive to see another rise in the number of young people gaining skills based qualifications. Vocational routes have historically struggled to gain parity of esteem with more traditional academic qualifications and indications that the tide is turning are welcome in ensuring that all young people feel confident in choosing from a wide range of learning options.

“It is important to remember that these exam results have been achieved against a backdrop of increasing teacher workload and deteriorating pay and conditions of service. The level of concern among teachers has led to the NASUWT lodging a trade dispute with the Deputy First Minister and balloting members across Scotland for action short of strike action.

“Continued exam success relies on teachers being provided with working conditions which remove excessive workload and which recognise their role as highly skilled professionals. The NASUWT’s action calls on the Government and Employers to act to ensure that the teaching profession is fully resourced and support to continue to help young people achieve their best.”

Jane Peckham, NASUWT National Official Scotland, said:

“It is clear that once again teachers have pulled out all the stops to ensure their pupils receive the best support and preparation for these important exams.

“However, many teachers continue to have significant concerns about the bureaucracy and workload associated with the qualifications and appropriateness of the qualifications framework for all pupils.

“The NASUWT will be continuing to lobby for further steps to be taken to ensure that the curriculum and qualifications framework gives all pupils the best chance to achieve and supports teachers to focus on meeting the needs of their students.”

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