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St Ninian's inspection is the best in Scotland

Overall holistic approach to education praised

St Ninian's inspection report

St Ninian's High School, in East Renfrewshire, has achieved the best secondary inspection report ever to be issued by Education Scotland.

The Giffnock school, whose pupils regularly achieve some of the top exam results in the country, has been praised for the overall holistic education provided.

Inspectors scrutinised four areas of work during the week-long visit, with the school achieving two 'excellent' evaluations and two as 'very good'.

The quality of 'raising attainment and achievement' and 'leadership of change' were both recognised as being sector-leading, whilst 'learning, teaching and assessment' and 'ensuring wellbeing, equality and inclusion' were evaluated as very good.

Head Teacher John Docherty's leadership was singled out for high praise, with the entire senior leadership team also credited with helping deliver "outstanding outcomes" for pupils over a sustained period of time.

Other areas of highlight included the staff's commitment to continuous professional learning, the highly motivated pupils who are determined to succeed and the "climate of aspiration" which has been created in the school.

Mr Docherty, who has been at the helm of the school for 14 years, was also Head Teacher during the last inspection in 2007 and is delighted that the continual improvement achieved since then has been recognised.

It is an absolute privilege to be Head Teacher at St Ninian's High School and this excellent inspection report is reward for all the hard work put in by staff, pupils and parents over many years. We always strive to provide the very best education for all our pupils, with a strong focus on giving them the skills they will need for later life. Our approach to preparing young people for employment involves a wide range of partners, and it is extremely pleasing to see this recognised by Education Scotland. Since our last inspection a decade ago the school has continued to improve and I'm absolutely committed to continuing to drive this school forward as we look to build on this latest endorsement, with everything we strive to achieve underpinned by gospel values, mutual respect and nurturing relationships across the school. John Docherty, St Ninian's Head Teacher

As recognition for the positive report, the council's Education Committee will be asked to accredit the school for its achievements. If agreed by councillors at the meeting on June 13, this would mean that the council would not carry out any formal quality assurance activities in St Ninian's High School for a period of three years.

This is an outstanding inspection report for St Ninian's and I'm delighted for everyone at the school. To achieve two excellent evaluations under Education Scotland's new inspection approach makes this the most impressive report across the whole country, which is a phenomenal achievement. It is also extremely pleasing to see so many areas of practice identified within the report as being worthy of being shared across the educational spectrum, especially the school's creative approaches to maximising attainment whilst also enhancing young people's awareness of strategies to promote positive mental health. We continue to see excellent practice across all our schools, and the sector-leading learning demonstrated within St Ninian's will be shared across the area to the benefit of all. This is another demonstration that our approach to providing all our pupils with a wide range of excellent experiences throughout their educational journey plays a massive part in developing and improving our already high-achieving schools. Councillor Paul O'Kane, Convener for Education and Equalities

Read the full report on the Education Scotland website.


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