Ahead of the pupil protest outside the SQA’s HQ today, it is worth thinking about the structural disadvantages facing young people from deprived communities in the broader context of this economic crisis. Economics commentator Aditya Chakrabortty wrote yesterday about the enormous ‘Covid jobs crisis’ to come when the furlough scheme finishes at the end of October, with […]




Usually on Source Direct we give focused news analysis on one main item, but there are so many things going on in Scottish politics right now we are going to give you a brief snapshot of several different issues today.  1) Economic Recovery report response: Remember Bennie Higgins’ Economic Recovery advisory report for Scottish Government Ministers? […]

Multiple-fronts of Scottish politics: a snapshot


“Given the choice between being ‘credible’ and being fair, a choice was made that strengthened inequality and erected roadblocks to social mobility for the poorest and most disadvantaged. In a just world, it would be the SQA and the Scottish Government that bore the consequences of that decision. In this one, that price will be paid by the nation’s youth”

Sean Bell: Burn down the SQA


“The problem at the heart of the statistical standardisation is that it can be simultaneously unfair to individuals, but also maintain the integrity of the system. However, if system integrity damages the life chances of individuals, then it is not much of a system.” Professor Guy Nason of the London School of Economics’ yesterday, summing up […]

“Somehow I’ve failed an exam I didn’t sit”



With the long-weekend behind us, Source Direct is coming late to the SNP bunfight. The room is being tidied up, and the National Executive Committee are nursing hangovers, as well as one or two bruises. Why did it happen, and what does it mean? First, for those of you who missed all the fun and […]

‘Cherrymandering’ may back-fire on the SNP leadership



What would you do if you were Prime Minister for a day? It’s not a bad question to get a sense of someone’s character and creativity. Douglas Ross, hotly tipped to be the next Scottish Tory leader after Jackson’s Carlaw’s shock departure yesterday, was once asked this in an interview, and, quick as flash, without […]

The calibre of political opposition in Scotland is woeful