Publication - Research and analysis

Growing up in Scotland: life at age 12

Published: 4 Jul 2019
Directorate:
Children and Families Directorate
Part of:
Children and families
ISBN:
9781787818576

Some initial findings about the lives of 12-year-old children living in Scotland, using data collected from the Growing Up in Scotland study (GUS).

Growing up in Scotland: life at age 12
Educational aspirations

Educational aspirations

Parents and children were both asked questions measuring educational aspirations. Children were asked whether or not they wanted to stay on in education after they turn 16. Parents were asked how far in school, further or higher education they would like the child to go, with response options ranging from obtaining National 4 or 5 qualifications to attending university. Parents could also say they didn’t really mind.

Most children (77%) were keen to stay in education after the age of 16. Only 5% said they wanted to leave education at 16, whilst 19% were unsure.

Children’s views on staying in education after the age of 16

Children's views on staying in education after the age of 16

Girls were more likely than boys to want to stay in education after the age of 16 (81% compared with 72%) and boys were more likely than girls to want to leave (6% compared with 3%). Boys were also more likely than girls to be uncertain – 22% said they were unsure compared with 16% of girls.

Girls were more likely than boys to want to stay in education after the age of 16

Girls were more likely than boys to want to stay in education after the age of 16

Children’s views about staying in education were associated with parental education. Those living in a household where at least one parent had degree level qualifications were more likely than those whose parents had no qualifications to want to remain in education after the age of 16 (83% compared with 65% respectively).

Children living in a household where at least one parent had degree level qualifications were more likely to want to remain in education than those whose parents had no qualifications

Children living in a household where at least one parent had degree level qualifications were more likely to want to remain in education than those whose parents had no qualifications

Most parents said they would like their child to attend university (61%) whilst a significant minority said that they didn’t really mind what their child did (15%). A smaller proportion indicated they wanted their child to stop their education after achieving school level qualifications (13%). Parents of girls were more likely than parents of boys to want their child to attend university (67% compared with 56%). Parents of boys were more likely than parents of girls to report that they didn’t really mind (18% compared with 13%).

Parents of girls were more likely than parents of boys to want their child to attend university

Parents of girls were more likely than parents of boys to want their child to attend university

Wanting their child to attend university was the most common response amongst all parents, regardless of their level of education. Parents with degree level qualifications were the most likely to express a desire for their child to attend university (74%).

Most children (77%) expressed a desire to stay on in education after 16, regardless of their parent’s aspirations for them. Children whose parents aspired for them to attend university were the most likely to express a desire to stay on in education after age 16 (84%).

Association between child and parental educational aspirations

Association between child and parental educational aspirations


Contact

Email: GUS@gov.scot