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Council elections are taking place across Scotland on Thursday 4 May 2017.
Each council in Scotland is divided into smaller areas called wards. Each ward has three or four councillors who are elected to represent the local community.
A UK General Election will take place on 8 June 2017.
The Scottish Parliament has voted by a majority of 69-59 to open formal talks with the UK Government on details of a Section 30 Order that would enable an independence referendum to take place.
"It is now the will of the Scotland’s democratically elected national Parliament that discussions should begin with the UK Government to enable an independence referendum to be held."
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon
In a major speech setting out his agenda for Scottish education, DFM John Swinney highlighted its strengths – including the achievements of young people and teachers – and acknowledged the challenges being faced.
"Looking at the data, the status quo is not an option. Doing more of the same will not achieve our ambitions for our children and young people and their future."
Deputy First Minister John Swinney
Page updated: Tuesday, April 25, 2017