A total of 631 school pupils in Shetland received their exam results today either by text, email or post – a higher number than last year.
An initial analysis of this year’s results by staff from SIC’s children’s services department shows a “very good” performance.
This year, for the first time, schools presented candidates for the new National Qualifications at levels 1 to 5 as part of Curriculum for Excellence.
These are very different qualifications from Standard Grade, with National 4 (N4) being internally assessed by schools, and the externally-assessed National 5 (N5) covering new course work.
Education chiefs say comparisons with the now-obsolete Standard Grades are “inappropriate”. The new Higher qualification courses begin this month for pupils to take in next year’s exams.
Key points this year show that the number of candidates sitting SQA (Scottish Qualifications Authority) qualifications in Shetland rose from 622 last year to 631 this year. Of these, 93 per cent of candidates passed at least one N4, and 79 per cent passed at least one N5.
At Higher level, the number of entries was up significantly from 844 to 911.
The results at all other qualification levels are equally good, according to SIC children’s services, where staff are now reviewing the detailed results with head teachers. A fuller analysis of the outcomes of this year’s exams will follow in due course.
Local schools are ready to discuss results with pupils. Information is also available from Skills Development Scotland’s website – skillsdevelopmentscotland.co.uk/
SIC education and families committee chairwoman Vaila Wishart said: “This has been an excellent start to the new qualifications, and my congratulations to all the candidates, their teachers and parents.”
Anderson High School pupil Bronagh Goodlad from Quarff is delighted with her five Highers, four of them – biology, chemistry, English and maths with the highest mark of A. Her lowest result was a B in physics.
She said: “I’m very pleased. I wasn’t expecting [anything] so good. My lowest mark was in physics, it was hard – maths was hard too. I’m really surprised and happy.”
Bronagh, who wants to be a vet, is now doing Advanced Highers in biology, chemistry and physics, plus a science Baccalaureate. The family will have a celebration when they go to Aberdeen this weekend, where her sister is horse-riding.
Sandwick Junior High School pupil Lucy Simpson, 15, was also delighted with her results. Lucy, from Bigton, achieved eight As at National Certificate level.
She said: “I was really really pleased, I couldn’t believe it. I didn’t think I’d done well in physics, I was shocked to see I’d got an A, I was gobsmacked.”
Lucy is now going to Anderson High School to do Highers in physics, biology, maths, English and music, and hopes to do astro-physics at university.
Isles MP Alistair Carmichael, has congratulated the thousands of young people who have received their Higher exam results today.
He said: “Congratulations to the thousands of Scottish pupils who have been successful in their Higher exams. I know for young people waiting on your higher results looms large over the summer, and today I am sure that so many will be delighted to know their hard work has paid off.
“Highers are an important milestone in a person’s life and this will be the building block for them go on into university, college, employment or start their own business.
“Special praise must also go to staff and teachers in schools across the country for their dedication and commitment in preparing students for these exams and encouraging their talents and ambitions.”