East Renfrewshire pupils deliver record-breaking results in first ever exams

Attainment has continued to rise across the board, with strong results in National 5, Higher and Advanced Higher

Barrhead High pupils celebrate SQA exam success 2022

Published: 9 August 2022

Pupils across East Renfrewshire have delivered another year of record-breaking results in the first set of SQA exams for three years.

All of the pupils were sitting formal exams for the first time, due to the alternative certification model which was used to determine results during the pandemic.

Attainment has continued to rise across the board, with strong results in National 5, Higher and Advanced Higher and many schools delivering best ever performances.

East Renfrewshire Council's Convener for Education and Equalities, Councillor Andrew Anderson, praised the thousands of pupils for their dedication.

Councillor Andrew Anderson said: 'East Renfrewshire's pupils have continued to raise the bar with new record-breaking levels of attainment. The success of our pupils is directly attributable to their relentless efforts and resilience and the support and care of their parents and our dedicated staff, without whom these achievements would not be possible. Despite the ongoing effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, East Renfrewshire's schools have gone above and beyond to enable all learners to experience high quality learning and teaching. Schools ensured that pupils were prepared for their SQA exams, and they have certainly delivered on all fronts, and we will ensure that all pupils continue to receive the support they need to do so in future, as we recover from the pandemic. Well done to everyone.'

Key achievements include:

  • 77% of S4 pupils attained 5 or more awards at National 5 or better
  • 47% of S5 pupils attained 5 or more awards at Higher
  • 69% of S5 pupils attained 3 or more awards at Higher
  • 240 S5 pupils attained 5 or more A awards at Higher - 18% of the original S4 year group
  • At Advanced Higher, 44% of S6 pupils achieved one or more awards (an increase of 4% since 2019).
  • St Luke's High continued to perform well at National 4 level, with almost 96% of S4 pupils achieving this measure.
  • Both Eastwood and Barrhead high schools performed extremely well at National 5, with Eastwood achieving its highest ever proportion of S4 pupils attaining 5 or more awards.
  • Barrhead and Woodfarm high schools recorded their highest ever proportion of S5 pupils attaining 5 or more awards at Higher. 
  • Williamwood High recorded its second highest level of attainment for S5 pupils in 1 or more and 3 or more awards at Higher.
  • At St Ninian's High, over a quarter of S5 pupils attained 5 or more A Awards at Higher and Mearns Castle High recorded its largest proportion of S5 pupils attaining this measure.
  • Eastwood, Mearns Castle, St Ninian's and Woodfarm high schools performed very strongly in one or more awards at Advanced Higher.
  • Pupils at Isobel Mair School delivered fantastic SQA results, with senior pupils achieving a range of National 2 and vocational qualifications.

As well as celebrating the SQA success, East Renfrewshire continues to offer more than 50 vocational options to S4, S5 and S6 pupils in East Renfrewshire. Each year almost 400 pupils take on these courses, providing the opportunity to study for a vocational qualification alongside other subjects, enabling them to gain skills that will help them enter the workplace or further education in the future.

East Renfrewshire Council's Director of Education Mark Ratter said: 'I'm delighted for all the pupils, staff and parents that their hard work has delivered the results they deserve. With the ongoing challenges presented by Covid-19, the results delivered today are nothing short of outstanding. The improvements at S4, S5 and S6 provide clear evidence that we have focussed on equity and excellence by raising the bar for all. As a council, our values are ambition, kindness and trust. It is clear that all our pupils have demonstrated high levels of ambition and have dedicated themselves to achieve the very best outcomes possible. The fantastic exam results are just one element of what our schools do so well, ensuring all our pupils enjoy a well-rounded education with excellent experiences preparing them for the next step in their lives. I always look forward to seeing what our pupils go on to achieve next.'

CASE STUDIES

Woodfarm GroupIt was all smiles at Woodfarm High, in East Renfrewshire, as the school celebrated its best ever Higher results. For the third year in a row, the Giffnock school increased the number of its pupils who achieved 5 or more Highers. Sam Edgar, 16, from Giffnock, has been appointed as School Captain for the year ahead and was delighted to land 5As. He said: "I was overthinking things last night and doubting how I'd get on, but I'm delighted with the results and it sets me up well for next year when I come back to do my Advanced Highers." Elise Flynn, 17, is the other School Captain and despite the nerves was over the moon to discover she'd also secured 5As in Business Studies, English, Maths, Modern Studies and Music. The accomplished pianist and violin player has aspirations to go on to study law and said: "The school had prepared us really well for our first set of formal exams and I feel like I've now got the rewards for all the hard work." Lily Frame, 16, from Giffnock, had a nervous wait for the text message to arrive confirming her results. Lily, who is also Member of the Scottish Youth Parliament (MSYP), said: "The text came in at 8.05am and I was really nervous opening it, so I went away to my room to check the results. All the studying has definitely been worth it." Also celebrating were Kaarthi Paramanathan, 17, and Alisha Ihsam, 16, from Thornliebank. Both pupils sat 6 Highers and were delighted to achieve 5As and 1B each. Kaarthi said: "I've been thinking about the results for the past 3 days, so I'm glad they're now here and I've achieved such great grades." Alisha said: "I'm pleased with the results and it has given me the motivation to keep working hard for the 4 Advanced Highers I'm going to do next year."

Kirsty Maclean 1Barrhead High pupil Kirsty Maclean managed to juggle the commitments of training full time with Rangers Women team and all her studies. After securing 5 Highers - 2As and 3Bs - the 17-year-old is delighted with her results. The Scotland Under-17 cap, who has just signed a full-time professional contract with Rangers, is excited to see what the future holds especially with so much interest in women's football following the success of the Women's Euro 2022 tournament. Central midfielder Kirsty, whose favourite player is Argentinian superstar Lionel Messi, said: "Juggling my training commitments every night and keeping up my studies was certainly challenging, but the school really supported me to ensure I was as prepared as possible. I've already made a handful of appearances for the Rangers first team, so we'll be looking to build on winning the league last season and after signed my first pro contract hopefully cementing my starting spot in the team. It's fantastic that I've achieved such good results because it's always important to have something to fall back on."'

Cameron MacIntryreCameron McIntyre, from Barrhead High, is over the moon after getting the results he needed to secure a pipe fitting apprenticeship with BAE Systems. 2As, in PE and Metalwork, and a B in Geography, mean that the 17-year-old will now be able to start his employment later this month. A delighted Cameron said: "It's absolutely class. I'm so delighted and now just can't wait to get started in my apprenticeship. I enjoy hands-on type work so was really focussed on securing my apprenticeship and the school was so supportive in ensuring I was prepared for the exams to get the grades I needed."

Barrhead Group 1The 5th Years at Barrhead High have secured another historic year for the school, as they increased the number of pupils gaining 5 Highers or more for the fourth year in a row. In total 30% of year group got 5 or more Highers, an increase of 10% since 2019. Callyn McTaggart, 17, was originally planning to leave school before having a change of heart and staying on to sit his Highers. And after securing 2As, 1B and 1C, he's sure he made the right choice. Callyn said: "I originally wanted to leave and take up joinery, but then decided I'd see how I could get on with my Highers. I'm so glad I did because I now want to go into primary teaching. I've helped out coaching younger kids at football and it's made me realise that I really enjoyed it and that teaching is the career for me." Amy Tasker, 17, from Barrhead, was jumping for joy after working so hard to get the results she wanted. 2As, 1B, 1C and a vocational qualification have set the 17-year-old up for her plans to pursue a career in primary teaching after being inspired as a youngster. She said: "I've always loved the idea of teaching because I had such a great primary school teacher who really inspired me and I've always wanted to follow

in his footsteps." Other pupils excelling were Sol Duncan, 17, who gained 5As. Ailie Murphy, 17, was up at 6.45am waiting on the text to drop, but it was all worth it after finding out she had got 5As. She said: "I was so nervous but I'm so delighted." Lewis McGuire, 17, also got 5As and hopes to pursue a career in Computing Science. And Lily MacPherson, 16, got 2As and 3Bs and now plans to return for 6th Year to do 2 Advanced Highers and one more Higher.

Isobel Mair groupEight artistic pupils from Isobel Mair School - East Renfrewshire's dedicated school for children with additional support needs - had their work selected to be part of the SQA Shine Showcase of work by N1 and 2 Level students. As well as being part of this fantastic Developing the Young Workforce initiative, all eight pupils are celebrating fantastic SQA success today. Fraser Reid (S5) gained N2 English, Food Health and Wellbeing and Bronze Personal Achievement Award and working towards N2 Maths and ICT. Christy Kerr (S5) has received N2 Food Health and Wellbeing and a Bronze Personal Achievement Award, as well as working towards N2 English, Maths, Science and ICT. Thomas Connell (S5) secured N2 English, Food Health and Wellbeing, a Bronze Personal Achievement Award and is working towards N2 Maths, PE and ICT. Demi Adeleke (S6) achieved N2 English, ICT and Science, and after finishing school is now going on to West College Scotland to complete a Development Course. Anne Stewart (S6) gained N2 ICT, a Bronze Personal Achievement Award and N2 units in Maths, English and Scottish Studies. Emily Green (S5) received N2 English, Food Health and Wellbeing and a Bronze Personal Achievement Award, whilst also working towards N2 Maths, ICT and Science. Daniel McCarrey (S5) secured N2 Maths, Food Health and Wellbeing and Bronze Personal Achievement Award, and is working towards N2 English, ICT and Science. Joe Lochhead (S6) gained N2 English and ICT, as well as N2 units in Maths and Scottish Studies. He is now preparing to attend Langside College.

Last modified on 16 August 2022