“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”


What to do about schools is becoming a big problem for the Scottish Government, with no clear solution yet in sight and significant confusion about what the Scottish Government is trying to achieve. The problem is three dimensional: 1) how to stop pupils spreading the virus by being in close contact with one another, as […]

Scrapping exams is the key to solving the schools conundrum



Allan Crosbie, national executive member of the EIS teaching union, says he wants to feel like a teacher, not an SQA clerk – the response of educational authorities to Covid-19 has so far been a massive wasted opportunity. I’ve been an English teacher for 26 years and a PT for half of that time. Too […]

Would it be so bad to trust teachers during Covid-19?


First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has said Scotland is on a search for a “new normal”. She wrote over the weekend that when “the kaleidoscope of our lives is shaken there is an opportunity to see them put back together differently, and see a new way of doing things.” What could this mean in Education? Never […]

A “new normal” in Education?


“It is pretty clear the Scottish establishment is starting to mobilise to see if it can limited reform as much as possible. They’re already saying ‘first get me my neoliberal utopia back at great public expense – then and only then am I willing to offer you a couple of minor nods towards reform’.”

Robin McAlpine: Recover forward – how to use crisis for good