THE number of pupils leaving school and going into further or higher education, training, or employment has hit a five-year high, new statistics show.

According to recent data collected by Scottish Borders Council (SBC), in 2022/23 nearly 97 per cent (96.84 per cent) of school leavers in the Borders moved on to a positive destination.

The national average is 95.87 per cent.

The number of pupils who have experiences of poverty who then went into a positive destination also hit a five-year high, with 96.84 per cent moving into a positive destination, and 47 per cent moving on to further education.

Councillor Leagh Douglas, SBC's executive member for education and lifelong learning, said: “These latest figures are extremely encouraging.

"They demonstrate the work that our schools and partners are doing to support our young people, in presenting all of the options that are available to them and supporting them on their own journey to a positive destination."

According to data, the positive destinations of the 1,200 pupils who left school in the Borders in June 2023 included:

  • 34 per cent in higher education
  • 25 per cent in further education
  • 31 per cent in employment (six per cent higher than the national average)

Schools in the Borders and their partners - including Skills Development Scotland, Developing the Young Workforce, SBC Employment service, Community Learning and Development and Borders College - are working together to support young people in the region into local employment and apprenticeships.

The percentage of school leavers unemployed and seeking work is 1.58 per cent, which is below the national average and is also the lowest figure for five years.