The official economic data for the first half of 2020 is out, and according to the ONS there is only one country in Europe that Britain has not had a deeper recession than in the first half of the year. Spain. Now guess which two countries has had the worst deaths per million from Covid-19? […]

No time for fiddling while Rome burns



Education Secretary John Swinney’s U-turn was about as complete as could be, to the extent that it was more an O than a U. All those SQA moderators may as well not bothered – Swinney has rubbed out their markings.  The questions about what this means for the future of Scottish education are profound (David […]

Grading U-turn is the starting pistol on 2021 election



As schools begin to fully re-open in Scotland, this may begin to feel like the start of a return to normal for many, but the global situation suggests complacency would be a big mistake. The 20 million recorded infections mark globally was reached overnight, with cases doubling in just six weeks. There are 730,000 recorded […]

The global pandemic is getting worse




Education Secretary John Swinney has created the expectation of a major reversal on the SQA pupil grading system when he speaks to the parliament on Tuesday.  “These are unprecedented times and as we have said throughout this pandemic, we will not get everything right first time,” he said yesterday. Politicians willing to admit to mistakes […]

How the Education Secretary can save his job


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 […]

Cecilia’s Cs