Jun 28 2011 by Denis Brown, Perthshire Advertiser Tuesday
CLAIMS that the council is paying out several thousands of pounds each year for late exam changes have failed to add up.
A source told the PA that Perth and Kinross Council (PKC) was being stung with extra charges to enrol numerous students for examinations after an official deadline with the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA).
“My understanding is that this is happening at most if not all secondary schools across Perthshire and Kinross-shire,” said the man who declined to be identified.
“I can’t tell you which schools are the worst offenders but I believe in each case the school has to shell out roughly £30 a student or subject.
“This is simply bad management and it’s costing the council and rate payers many thousands of pounds every year.”
Although a PKC spokeswoman conceded that the council did pay late fees to the SQA, she said it was not on the scale claimed by the source.
“In the last academic year across all council secondary schools a total of £1550 in additional charges was paid, which is 0.25% of the council's overall SQA costs,” she said.
She said PKC strived for a level playing field by aiming to give all pupils the best possible opportunities to achieve to their fullest potential.
“Whilst late changes to exam entries are avoided wherever possible through careful monitoring and checks, there are from time to time instances where, based on pupils' attainment and progress, schools will decide closer to the time of examinations that it is justifiable to change the exam level that young people are entered for,” she said.
“In each instance an additional charge is paid to the SQA by the council.”