A third of SNPs education targets have been 'delayed, diverted or ducked'

  • Kristy Ellis
Scottish Conservative Leader, Ruth Davidson, has claimed that a third of Nicola Sturgeon’s education targets have been “delayed, diverted or ducked” despite claims it is her top priority.

Ruth Davidson highlighted a "report card" showing that 23 of the SNPs 75 initiatives to improve the schools system have been missed.

Ms Davidson said high-priority schemes such as encouraging more high-quality graduates into teaching, as wells a drive to improve the inspection regime had been kicked into the long grass.

Ms Sturgeon was described as frantically consulting John Swinney, the Education Minister and her deputy, as Ruth Davidson questioned her during First Minister's Questions.

Reports suggest Nicola Sturgeon struggled to answer the questions and instead used a blanket "we are taking a range of action across all these issues" stance.

There are 3,500 fewer teachers than when the SNP came to power in 2017. There are suggestions that a primary school in Moray may have to operate on a part-time basis due to a “grave” shortage of teachers.

Ms Davidson said:

Nicola Sturgeon has made great play of the claim education is her number one priority. But when you go through 75 actions the Scottish Government specifically identified to improve education last year, it turns out a third have been delayed, dropped or ducked.

“All the while, schools across the country are struggling to recruit teachers, and pupils are suffering as a result. Parents and teachers will look at these failings and conclude the First Minister is simply not living up to the commitment she’s made on education.
Ruth Davidson also highlighted that a new standards framework to help improve school inspections, promised for June 2017, had not been delivered.

Ruth Davidson finished with:

Famously, the First Minister started this year again insisting that education would be her number one priority. At the end of the year, does she really think it looks that way?
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon commented:

We are a government taking a range of actions to make sure that we are improving education and closing the attainment gap.
SNP MSP Mark McDonald quits SNP in Sleaze Investigation
  • Alfie Baron

Aberdeen Donside MSP Mark McDonald has quit the Scottish National Party (SNP).

His resignations follows allegations of misconduct against at least two women.

McDonald resigned from the SNP with immediate effect - but will remain as an Independent MSP.