Satisfaction with schools in Scotland in marked decline, finds major survey

Fewer Scots said they were satisfied with the quality of schools in their area. Picture: John Devlin
Fewer Scots said they were satisfied with the quality of schools in their area. Picture: John Devlin
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The percentage of Scots who claim they are satisfied with the quality of schools in their local area has dropped sharply since 2007, mirroring a wider decline in satisfaction with Scotland's public services in general.

The 2018 Scottish Household Survey, the results of which were published today, found combined satisfaction with the three public services - health, schools and public transport - is at its lowest level since the SNP came to power at Holyrood.

A total of 71 per cent of respondents to the survey said they were happy with education providers in their local area, down from 79 per cent in 2007.

Those satisfied with public services in general has fallen to 52 per cent, down from a peak of 66 per cent in 2011.

Liz Smith, Scottish Conservative shadow education secretary said: “We didn’t need a household survey to tell us that the SNP has undermined public trust in Scottish schools.

“It has been obvious for some time that teachers and parents have many concerns about SNP education policy.

“Under the SNP schools have too few teachers which has resulted in shortages in key subjects and in additional support for learning where staff numbers have dropped by 26% in the last decade.

“We know too that there is increasing anxiety about the National 4 qualification and subject choice in S4-S6.

“All of this is restricting the ability of our schools to get the best out of the talents of our young people.”

Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie today said that people's satisfaction in key public services has “nosedived” on the SNP's watch, after a new Scottish Government survey showed it is at its lowest level since records began.

Mr Rennie said: "The findings of the SNP Government's own official survey are unmistakeable. People are rightly unimpressed by the SNP's handling of their schools, health and transport services. Satisfaction has nosedived.

“Staff are as frustrated as anyone else and the goodwill of everyone from teachers to nurses has been relied upon for far too long.

“The SNP’s priority will always be independence. The claim that education is the First Minister’s priority is in tatters. Teachers wouldn’t be at their wits end if the SNP had put anywhere near the same amount of energy into making Scottish education the best again."

The Scotsman has asked the Scottish Government for comment.