We have endured eight years of SNP control of the education system and the net result has been a sharp drop in overall standards and, simultaneously, an increasing gap in attainment between the more and the less affluent.
The statistics on literacy, numeracy, the Higher mathematics pass rate (34 per cent!) and now the fall in numbers studying maths and science are all evidence of this shocking record.
It is actually a pretty difficult trick to pull off, to have a uniformly negative impact on both primary and secondary education, and simultaneously reduce the numbers studying the most crucial subjects in the curriculum, but the SNP has managed it.
Now we hear that Nicola Sturgeon will turn her attention to education with an emphasis on “what works”. This is beyond ironic.
The SNP were repeatedly told that their policies would have just the appalling effects now evident to all. They have routinely ignored professional advice and the evidence of “what works” from other countries.
Even as we speak they are continuing to ignore the home-grown evidence.
The languages policy in primary schools has been, predictably, a catastrophic failure, resulting in fewer and fewer pupils choosing to study languages.
Requiring primary teachers to teach a language which they cannot speak was doomed to failure.
The SNP solution? They will now be required to teach two such languages! It would be farcical if it were not such a tragedy for the unfortunate young people obliged to suffer this nonsense.
Currently the crisis management solution of the SNP is to throw £100 million at a series of half-baked projects, all different, with no structure or consistency, in a variety of locations.
It will be another waste of money which will have no discernible impact on the fundamental problems introduced by the SNP.
For those not familiar with the detail of these problems, here are just a few: no standards whatsoever in primary schools, at any stage; a reduction in the use of written materials in favour of something called active learning, definition yet to be supplied.
Physics teachers obliged to teach literacy, history teachers obliged to teach numeracy and all secondary teachers obliged to teach health and well-being.
What is that exactly? Good question. Cross-curricular projects which consume teaching time and oblige teachers to “move out of their comfort zones”.
To the uninitiated, this means teaching subjects in which they have no expertise. Not surprisingly, none of this works!
A small country like Scotland relies on its educated citizens to create and sustain a flourishing economy. We simply cannot afford to let the SNP continue to destroy our most precious resource.
Former president, School Leaders Scotland
Chair, Scottish Secondary Mathematics Group