Scottish private schools chalking up record results

In an article in the Scotsman, 3/08/13, Chris Marshall reports that Scotland's private schools have achieved exam results which equal last year's record, with the pass rate for Highers over 90 per cent.

Figures released by the Scottish Council for Independent Schools (SCIS) show 93 per cent of pupils in S5 received at least a C at Higher, with 56 per cent of those passing with A grades.

The results are the same as last year, when pupils at independent schools received their best grades since analysis of results began in 2007.

Edinburgh all-boys school Merchiston Castle received the highest proportion of A grades, with 81 per cent. 

Another Edinburgh school, George Heriot’s, received the next best results with 69 per cent of exams sat by 175 pupils graded A.

Earlier this month, figures for Scotland as a whole showed the Higher pass rate had risen from 76.9 per cent last year to 77.4 per cent, with the proportion of students passing Standard Grades, Intermediates and Advanced Highers also on the rise.

The SCIS figures also show that 92 per cent of candidates in S6 achieved an A-C pass at Advanced Higher, of which 49 per cent achieved A grades. There was also a 12.3 per cent rise in the number of entries for Higher French compared with last year, despite a 9.6 per cent fall across all of Scotland’s schools.

John Edward, SCIS director, said: “This year’s SQA [Scottish Qualifications Authority] results, combined with those at A-level and the International Baccalaureate, recognise the purposeful learning environment that exists at Scotland’s independent schools. Pupils and teachers are to be congratulated for their hard work.

Alistair Hector, headmaster at George Heriot’s, said: “We are thrilled with these results and are very proud of our pupils.

“Breaking records, as this year’s cohorts at each level have, is not what exam results are about, though. The important thing is that each pupil does their best and achieves the highest grades they are capable of.

“Given the consistently good performance of our pupils in recent years, particularly at Higher, we were confident our pupils would do themselves justice this year, but in fact they have exceeded expectations and we are delighted for them.”

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