Primary school inspections: FOI release

Information request and response under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002

Information requested

  1. How many primary schools have not been inspected for 10 years or more? 
  2. The longest time any primary school has currently been waiting since it's last inspection? 
  3. How many schools are used to create the virtual comparators for South Morningside Primary School on Parentzone? 
  4. How many of those have been inspected in each of the last 5 years?


Education Scotland has significantly strengthened its scrutiny functions and increased the number of school inspections it carries out. In the last academic year (2018/19) Education Scotland completed 252 school inspections, an increase of over 30% on the previous year.
Schools are selected for inspection each year on a proportionate basis, using a sampling approach and predetermined set criteria rather than a cyclical approach.

1. 604 primary schools have not been inspected for 10 years or more.
2. The longest time since last inspection is 16 years
3. Data from all primary schools in Scotland is used to create the comparator score on the school information dashboard. The information is used to show how pupils in the school performed against Curriculum for Excellence levels (by stage i.e. P1, P4 and P7) and by organiser (i.e. numeracy, reading, writing and listening and talking) against similar pupils across Scotland. It is therefore not a discrete group of schools that Morningside Primary School is compared with.
4. The number of primary schools inspected in Scotland in the last five years is shown below:











In Scotland, overall responsibility for the quality of education and securing continuous improvement sits with the local authority. There is a three-level approach to evaluating and improving education: schools have a responsibility to evaluate their performance; local authorities have responsibility for the quality of education in their area; and the third level is scrutiny activity carried out by HM Inspectors of Education.

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Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
Regent Road

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