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7-SCHOOL

Ten year high for catholic pupil numbers

Pupil numbers at Catholic schools in Scotland are at their highest level for a decade, according to Scottish Government figures.

Barbara Coupar, director of the Scottish Catholic Education Service, said the figures showed that Catholic education in Scotland was something ‘people of all faiths and none wanted to support.’

The Summary Statistics for Schools in Scotland publication released on December 13 reveal there are now 121,904 pupils at Catholic schools in Scotland, the highest level since 2006. This is despite the fact there are 27 fewer Catholic schools, down from 391 a decade ago to 364 today. Overall decline in the number of children attending school in Scotland means that pupils at Catholic schools make up 17.8 per cent of the total versus 17.2 per cent in 2006.

Mrs Coupar said that the figures were ‘a good news story.’

“We see from the recent consultations in East Renfrewshire and Inverclyde the growing demand for places at Catholic schools,” she said. “There’s something about Catholic schools that people are drawn to.”

While cautioning that we shouldn’t read too much into statistics, she said that in these times of stretched budgets ‘we can always do more to support teachers,’ adding that as the government talks about the importance of diversity and inclusion in education, ‘parents are clearly seeing that in Catholic schools and wanting to send their children there.’

—ian@sconews.co.uk

 

—This story ran in full in the December 16 edition print of the SCO, available in parishes.

 

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