Say what you like about Nicola Sturgeon but she’s consistent. Every autumn, when she sets out her programme for government, the First Minister makes the same pledge:
‘We will make it a priority to improve the educational outcomes of pupils in the most disadvantaged areas of Scotland… a targeted approach to attainment that will help children across Scotland—especially those in our disadvantaged areas.’
‘Improving school attainment is arguably the single most important objective in this programme for government. Improving it overall and closing the gap between children in our most and least deprived areas is fundamental to our aim of making Scotland fairer and more prosperous.’
‘I have said that I want to be judged on our success in narrowing and, ultimately, closing the attainment gap. We must not tolerate a situation where some children from deprived areas do less well at school than those from affluent areas.’
‘[I]mproving education—including by closing the attainment gap—is our number one priority.’
Nicola Sturgeon keeps her promises. She just doesn’t act on them.