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Information on the Deputy First Minister can now be found at https://beta.gov.scot/about/who-runs-government/cabinet-and-ministers/deputy-first-minister/

Deputy First Minister

Deputy First Minister and Cabinet Secretary for Education and Skills

John Swinney MSP
John Swinney MSPBiography

Born in 1964, John Swinney joined the Scottish National Party in 1979 and went on to graduate from Edinburgh University with an MA (Hons) in Politics. He has worked for the Scottish Coal Project, Development Options and Scottish Amicable.
Prior to his election as Westminster MP for North Tayside in 1997, he held a number of posts in the SNP at local and national level. In 1999, he became the MSP for Tayside North, remaining as the constituency’s MP until standing down from Westminster at the 2001 General Election.

From 1998 to 2000, he served as deputy leader of the SNP, and then as party leader between 2000 and 2004.  He was re-elected as an MSP at the 2011 Scottish Parliament election and appointed Cabinet Secretary for Finance and Sustainable Growth. He was appointed as Deputy First Minister and Cabinet Secretary for Finance, Constitution & Economy in November 2014.  In May 2016, he was appointed as Deputy First Minister and Cabinet Secretary for Education and Skills.

Responsibilities

Responsibilities

Government Strategy, Delivery and outcomes across portfolios, Resilience, School standards, Educational attainment and closing the attainment gap, National Improvement Framework, Quality and improvement, Teaching profession, School infrastructure and staffing, Qualifications, Behaviour, Measures to combat bullying, The Gaelic and Scots languages, Modern languages, Historical Abuse Enquiry, Named person, Cross Government co-ordination of Public Service Reform, Childcare implementation, Early years, Child protection, Social services workforce, Adoption and Fostering, Children’s rights, Looked after children, Children’s hearings, Protection of vulnerable groups, Children’s services, Widening Access, Higher education and universities, Further education and colleges, Student funding, Science and STEM, Youth work, Skills Development Scotland, Implementation of Wood recommendations, Non advanced vocational skills.

Ministers

Contact

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Postal address

Please address to the relevant Minister or portfolio
St. Andrew's House, Regent Road, Edinburgh, EH1 3DG

Email

Ministers' Mailbox (scottish.ministers@gov.scot)
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