De­prived chil­dren not mak­ing it to univer­sity

The Oban Times - - Front Page -

NOT ONE sin­gle child from a de­prived back­ground in Ar­gyll and Bute got the nec­es­sary grades to go to univer­sity, a na­tional statis­tics doc­u­ment has re­vealed.

Fig­ures gath­ered by the Con­ser­va­tive Party this week show that chil­dren from the area’s poor­est fam­i­lies did not achieve the three A-grades re­quired for au­to­matic ac­cep­tance at univer­sity in 2014.

The re­gion was one of four coun­cils in Scot­land to record the poor level of aca­demic achieve­ment for those from de­prived back­grounds.

A spokes­woman for Ar­gyll and Bute Coun­cil said: ‘ It is im­por­tant to look at at­tain­ment in full.

‘ The ta­ble [of grades] shows only a sin­gle mea­sure of one qual­i­fi­ca­tion and one year group. Pick­ing out one mea­sure is mis­lead­ing.

‘Ar­gyll and Bute has a rel­a­tively low num­ber of young peo­ple who sat Highers in 2014 and who came from the low­est two Scot­tish In­dex of Mul­ti­ple De­pri­va­tion (SIMD) in­di­ca­tors.

‘ With such small num­bers, the per­cent­age is not sta­tis­ti­cally valid. Look­ing at the full pic­ture, Ar­gyll and Bute com­pares favourably in com­par­i­son with a range of other author­i­ties and also has a wide range of al­ter­na­tive qual­i­fi­ca­tions that help our young peo­ple se­cure a pos­i­tive des­ti­na­tion.

‘Ar­gyll and Bute Coun­cil is com­mit­ted to en­sur­ing that all chil­dren have the same op­por­tu­ni­ties and the best pos­si­ble chances in life.’

Records show that of the young peo­ple who left school in 2013/ 2014, 40 per cent went on to higher ed­u­ca­tion – the high­est per­cent­age recorded in Ar­gyll and Bute.

A fur­ther 172 chose to con­tinue stud­ies at fur­ther ed­u­ca­tion col­leges, and 255 went into em­ploy­ment.

The over­all per­cent­age of school leavers in Ar­gyll and Bute en­ter­ing a pos­i­tive des­ti­na­tion for 2013/14 was 91 per cent.

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