School Leavers Across Renfrewshire Heading For Work Or Study

Derek MacKay MSP, George Adam MSP, Gavin Newlands MP

More Young People Setting Up For Success After School


School leavers in Renfrewshire continue to go on to positive destinations after finishing secondary school – with the latest figures showing 92.8% of youngsters in Renfrewshire going into further or higher education, employment or training three months after leaving school.


The total across Scotland has risen from 93.3% last year to 93.7% this year – showing that even more young people are finding fulfilling opportunities after leaving school.


In Renfrewshire, the percentage of people going on to positive destinations has gone from 92.2% last year to 92.8% this year – and increased from 88.1% since 2011/12.


Of those in positive destinations, 45% are at University and 23% are at college, while 21% are in employment and 3% are in training.


Commenting on the latest stats, Paisley’s MSP, George Adam said:


“The Scottish Government continues to make education its priority this parliament – and these figures reflect just how important SNP action on education is for our young people.


“Being able to go on to a positive destination after leaving school – whether that is college, university, work or training – is a great boost for young people across Renfrewshire, improving their self-confidence and setting them up to make positive contributions to our communities as adults.


“That more young people across Renfrewshire are going on to positive destinations this year than previously – up from 88.1% to 92.8% over the last six years – is fantastic news for our local community.


“Our young people need fulfilling work, study or training after leaving school to help ensure they don’t get left behind – and these positive figures for Renfrewshire and across Scotland show that they are benefitting from exactly that.”






Analysis Shows Single Market Essential For Paisley

Cost Of A Hard Tory Brexit: £2,300 Loss Per Person.


New economic impact analysis by the Scottish Government has confirmed that the best way to protect the local economy and household incomes in Paisley is through Scotland remaining in the Single Market and Customs Union.

Tom Arthur MSP, Derek MacKay MSP, George Adam MSP & Gavin Newlands MP

Failure by the Tory government to secure a Brexit deal would see Scotland take a £12.7 billion economic hit, equivalent to £2,300 per year for each person in Paisley. The analysis also shows that a ‘Canada-type’ deal with the EU, with limited access to the Single Market, would still leave people in Paisley £1,610 worse off per head.


Other key findings show that remaining in the Single Market could create new opportunities for the local economy in Paisley to flourish, and that continued freedom of movement is required to support economic growth. Local industries such as our NHS is dependent upon free movement. Figures show that EU citizens currently working in Paisley currently contribute an average of £10,400 in tax revenues.


Commenting, George Adam, Paisleys MSP said:


“The best way to protect the economy and jobs in Paisley is to ensure that Scotland remains within the European Single Market and Customs Union.


“This latest analysis by the Scottish Government shows just how important that is for people living in Paisley – who would be left £2,300 worse off in the result of a hard Brexit scenario that the Tories seem to be on course for.


“People in Paisley voted decisively to remain in the European Union. We’re almost two years on from the vote and they UK government has failed to provide certainty for businesses and our public services which rely on free trade and free movement with the rest of the EU.


“The decisions taken over the coming months will be absolutely vital for jobs and the future of the local economy in Paisley. Failing to back Scotland’s continued place in Europe would have serious consequences and would be an absolute tragedy for future generations.”


SNP Takes The Lead On Income Tax Discussion

Tax Must “Protect Low Earners, Be Progressive And Proportionate”


Paisley’s MSP, George Adam, has welcomed the publication of a discussion paper on the role of income tax in Scotland and praised the Scottish Government for taking the initiative to discuss the issue in an open and honest manner.


The Scottish Government’s paper includes proposals from all of Scotland’s political parties – with progressive parties backing varied measures in order to support public services, and Tory proposals supporting tax cuts for highest earners at the expense of public services.


The First Minister also outlined that any changes to income tax in Scotland must pass four key tests – including supporting public services, ensuring the lowest earners don’t see their taxes increase, making the system more progressive, and supporting the economy.


Commenting, George said:George sma shot portrait


“This discussion paper outlines the various proposals of Scotland’s political parties and where we stand heading towards the budget.


“It is perfectly clear that the Tories are isolated on taxation, as they are on so many other issues – with their proposals only offering a tax cut for the wealthiest and continued austerity for the rest of us.


“People in Paisley and across Scotland have the right to an open and honest discussion about the income tax that they will pay – and this is exactly what the Scottish Government is delivering.


“We need to be prepared to ask these difficult questions and to work with other parties to find an answer that means individuals and businesses are treated fairly and pay the right amount for the services that they receive in return.


“And as we work towards delivering a budget that works for Paisley and all of Scotland, we can rest assured that the Scottish Government will bring forward policy proposals that are in the interests of everyone, protecting the lowest earners and our public services in Paisley as opposed to just standing up for a wealthy few and putting our education and health services on the bonfire.”










George town hall landscape

Excellence and Success on Results Day

George Town HallAround 136,000 students across Scotland have received their results for a wide range of SQA qualifications including National 5, Highers and SQA Awards; with the number of Higher passes exceeding 150,000 for the third year in a row. The number of skills-based awards has also more than doubled in the past five years, growing from 24,849 in 2012, to 50,148 this year.

George Adam, Paisley’s MSP said, ‘The whole country should be proud of the qualifications gained by Scotland’s young people. The amount of Higher passes achieved by students from across the country is outstanding and we should be very pleased for our hardworking children and teachers. I am also delighted to see the successes achieved in the skills-based awards, and am in no doubt that many of our young people will now go on and showcase these skills in the workplace or future learning development.’

Additionally, more students from deprived backgrounds have successfully gained a place at university according to UCAS statistics published today. The UCAS figures show the number of prospective students from the 20% most deprived areas – SIMD 20 – successfully getting a place at university has risen by 13% to record levels. Since 2015, it has increased from 3,470 to 4,150 – a rise of 20%. This comes as the total number of students from Scotland getting a place at a Scottish university hit a new record of 27,830. The figures, produced by UCAS each year to coincide with the release of Scottish exam results, mark the latest progress in the Scottish Government’s drive to widen access to higher education.

George Adam said, ‘I am delighted to see the vast amount of students gaining places at University – this is a testament to the hard work of our young people and those working tirelessly in the teaching profession. With The University of the West Scotland on my doorstep, I see for myself the excellent work they do and frequently talk to students who are enjoying studying and developing their skills at UWS. The opportunities our young people now have are endless and it is encouraging to see that so many, regardless of background, are working hard and seizing every one that comes their way.’

Paisley’s MSP Welcomes Fall in Number of Teenage Pregnacies

Drop in Renfrewshire Part of Nationwide PictureGeorge in Paisley Town Centre


Paisley’s MSP, George Adam, has welcomed the fall in the number of teenage pregnancies across Renfrewshire, following the release of latest figures by the Information Services Division.


The number of people under 16 who became pregnant in Renfrewshire between 2012 and 2014 has dropped from 39 to 34.


Commenting on the figures, George said: “These latest figures show a welcome drop in the number of teens becoming pregnant across Renfrewshire – and reflect the dedicated work of education, health and community services.


“The Scottish Government published its ‘pregnancy and parenthood in young people’ strategy in March, aimed at addressing the fundamental causes of pregnancy in young people by considering wider factors that are central in supporting young people – such as education, attainment, training and employment.


“This work will continue – with a focus on ensuring services are putting young people at the centre of decision making and helping them to reach their potential as individuals, and where appropriate, as parents.”

George outside Paisley Abbey and Paisley Town Hall, underneath Glasgow Airport's Flightpath

Employment Hits Record High as Scotland Outperforms UK

New figures showing employment in Scotland at a record high and outperforming the UK have been welcomed, as the SNP in government gets on with the job of boosting Scotland’s economy.

Figures show that the employment level in Scotland has risen to 2,631,000 – and the employment rate has grown to 74.9 per cent, the highest rate of the four UK nations, and outperforms the UK as a whole. The new figures also show that youth unemployment in Scotland has fallen to its lowest level since 2006.

In further good economic news for Scotland, new figures show that manufacturing exports to overseas markets grew by 2.4 per cent in the year to Q3 2015.George outside Paisley Abbey and Paisley Town Hall, underneath Glasgow Airport's Flightpath

Commenting, Paisley’s MSP George Adam said:

“These are very encouraging figures showing employment at a record high – with Scotland outperforming every other nation in the UK as the SNP continues to use every economic lever at our disposal to create jobs and support people back into work.

“The figures on youth employment are particularly welcome – it’s vital that we do everything we can to ensure that our young people are empowered to reach their full potential, and today’s figures show that we are on the right track. There have been a number of business in Paisley opening in recent months which can only bode well for the local employment rate. We also have two iconic local buildings being refurbished, the Russell Institute and the former Arnotts building, which both when finished will increase job opportunities and further boost our local economy.

“While this progress across the country is very welcome, there is more work to be done – and over the coming weeks and months the SNP will lead an ambitious, national debate focussed on building on this progress and keep Scotland’s economy moving forward, with the re-election of Nicola Sturgeon as First Minister and an SNP government delivering for Scotland.”

SNP Depute Leader and Westminster Economy spokesperson Stewart Hosie added:

“The SNP in government is doing everything we can with the powers at our disposal to support more people into work – and we can’t allow this progress to be held back by a Tory government at Westminster obsessed with austerity.

“It’s time for George Osborne and David Cameron to learn some lessons from the approach of the SNP in government – and abandon their ideological commitment to austerity and use every means at their disposal to invest and create jobs.”

Further details can be found here.

George Welcomes Unemployment Falling Below 7%

George outside Paisley AbbeyPaisley’s MSP George Adam has welcomed the latest official figures showing a rise in employment and a fall in unemployment in Scotland. Scotland’s unemployment rate has now reduced to 6.9% and remains lower than the UK rate of 7.2%. In addition to this, Scotland’s youth employment rate continues to be above the UK as a whole.

Commenting, George said, “These figures are more good news for the Scottish economy and are a welcome endorsement of the Scottish Government’s efforts to boost the economy and create jobs.

‘We again see Scotland outperforming the UK as a whole in both the employment and unemployment levels. This is in addition to our youth employment rate which continues to be above the UK as a whole. With just under 6 months till the vote on Scottish independence, these figure show that the Scottish Government is working hard for the people of Paisley to boost employment, cut unemployment and get young people working with the limited powers we currently have. Imagine what we could do with the full powers of independence.

‘Scotland’s Future set out the Scottish Government’s plans for a truly transformational universal childcare system, which would open the door for even more women to get back into the workplace. We have seen from the recent publication of Labour devolution commission, that unless we have a Yes vote on September 18th, we cannot guarantee that the Scottish Government will get the powers it needs to improve even further the job opportunities for the people of Paisley and Scotland.

‘With the limited powers of devolution, the Scottish Government has managed to mitigate the worst excesses of Westminster’s cuts. With independence, we will be able to take action to grow the economy, create more jobs and ensure that more women and young people have the opportunity to take them up.”

George Welcomes Record Youth Unemployment Drop in Scotland

George Adam MSPPaisley’s MSP George Adam has welcomed news that youth unemployment experienced the biggest fall in 20 years and unemployment in Scotland fell by 4,000 over the three months to January 2013, as shown by official statistics published.

Scotland now has a lower headline unemployment rate of 7.4 per cent than the UK’s at 7.8% and a lower youth unemployment rate of 17.0% in Scotland compared to 20.6% per cent in the UK.

This is the fourth month in a row that shows unemployment in Scotland is falling and Scotland’s unemployment rate is now at its lowest in over three years.

Commenting, George said:

“These figures show that the SNP’s commitment to job creation and addressing youth unemployment is working. Unemployment has fallen by 4,000 and youth unemployment has fallen by levels not seen for over 20 years.

“But there is no room for complacency. No matter how much progress is made, there can be no let up as long as even one young person needs help finding their way out of unemployment.

“The time when young people are starting out in their careers has a massive effect on their life chances, so it is absolutely critical that every support possible is provided.

“Looking at the improvements Scotland has made with its current limited powers, we know we could achieve so much more armed with the full economic and fiscal powers of a normal independent nation.”

Record High Figures for College Numbers and Attainment

George outside Paisley Abbey

 Figures released by the Scottish Funding Council have shown that more 16-24 year olds than ever are working on full time college courses. These statistics show that colleges are exceeding the annual commitment of 116,000 full time equivalent places. This is an educational record for college student numbers between the ages of 16 and 24.

 Speaking on the figures, George Adam said:

 ‘These figures show how colleges are meeting and exceeding targets that will help our young people be ready for the work force when they leave college to meet today’s challenges.

 ‘Too often we are pointed towards the negatives and don’t recognise the great work that our colleges are doing everyday.

 ‘Reid Kerr is a prime example of a college on our doorstep doing great work, including courses on new renewable energy opportunities, giving our young people the tools to meet the work challenges of the future, matching employer’s needs. I have had the privilege of visiting the college many times, meeting the Principal Audrey Cumberford who has a vision for the future of the college and its students.

 ‘These figures are good news but we must never be complacent in order to meet the needs of our young people and employers.’

 Education Secretary Michael Russell said:

 ‘I pay tribute to the role of colleges in delivering Opportunities for All, our unique guarantee of a place in training or education – their part here in providing learning for young people cannot be underestimated.

 ‘Not only are our student numbers targets being exceeded, but more young people than ever before are benefiting from full time courses and more are successfully completing their studies. This is especially true for young people from more disadvantaged backgrounds.

 ‘Our commitment to the FE sector is clear. We have increased funding by £61 million over the spending review period, compared to plans in the draft budget statement and we are giving the sector the necessary framework for better college governance through the Post 16 Education Bill. Today’s figures show we are creating an improved college system from a position of real strength.’



The FTE figures used in this release are for Scottish Government funded places.


These figures are taken from two reports published by the Scottish Funding Council:

* Scotland’s Colleges: A Baseline Report for Academic Year 2011-12

* College Performance Indicators 2011-12


Alongside this, the SFC has also published a report on ‘HE Students Eligible for Funding 2012-13’


These figures can be accessed at:



Action to Support Youth Employment

MSP George Adam speaks in the Action to Support Youth Employment Debate in The Scottish Parliament

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