I have been contacted by and on behalf of secondary 6 pupils in West Lothian. Their understanding is that they will be asked to sit a Scottish Qualifications Authority paper as part of their grades assessment at a different time from other schools in their area. Their question, which I put to the First Minster, is this: how would that be an acceptable, equal or fair way of assessing them for their grades?
Schools have to judge and assess pupils’ performance, and they will use different ways to do that. The way that the member has set out may well be a way that some schools decide to use. I am happy to look into the particular issue that the member has raised and to come back to him in writing if there are issues that we want to address. However, we need to recognise that in an environment where, regrettably, exams cannot take place as normal, schools will use other ways throughout the year to assess their pupils’ performance. That is right and proper.