Students and teachers at Glasgow Gaelic school were treated to a visit from the boss of the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA) to mark 30 years of national qualifications being offered in Scotland's indigenous language.

Fiona Robertson, chief executive of SQA and Scotland’s Chief Examining Officer, met with Head Teacher Gillian Chaimbeul-Thow, pupils, and senior staff members to hear directly about their views and experiences of working towards and delivering SQA qualifications at the school.

Ms Robertson said: “It has been a privilege to be immersed in the Gaelic language and hear it echo through the corridors and classrooms, and to be welcomed into what is as much a community as it is a place of learning and teaching."

Next year marks the 25th anniversary of the opening of the Glasgow Gaelic Primary School – now Glasgow Gaelic Primary and Nursery School, and Glasgow Gaelic Secondary School (Àrd-sgoil Ghàidhlig Ghlaschu) – while 2023 is the 30th anniversary of SQA providing national assessments and examinations in the medium of Gaelic.

Ms Robertson added: “Àrd-sgoil Ghàidhlig Ghlaschu is very much a trailblazer and a leader not only in Gaelic education, but across the entire education community. That is a tribute to the hard work of the teachers and the school leadership – but most of all to the young learners here."

Pupils and teachers shared their experiences of delivering and undertaking a wide range of qualifications this year like business studies, computer games design, and photography.

The school has also increased the opportunities for wider achievement through the medium of Gaelic language which has been a great way to get the language into a more social setting in and around the school community

Head Teacher, Ms Chaimbeul-Thow, said: “At the heart of Àrd-sgoil Ghàidhlig Ghlaschu is Gaelic language and culture in an urban setting.

"The commitment from the families and community in supporting our young people and the development of the language is outstanding and a huge part of what makes the school a unique place.

"The staff are hugely committed to taking forward Gaelic Medium Education (GME) and to the expansion of GME qualifications with many of them being involved in the national An t-slighe project.”

The visit is the latest in a series of visits that Ms Robertson is undertaking around the country, to hear first-hand from classroom teachers and learners about their experiences of delivering and taking qualifications.

The views will inform the work being undertaken by the organisation to transition to the new national qualifications body and to further develop and improve current SQA products and services in the short term.

Ms Robertson said: “We are working hard to help ensure that the new national qualifications body for Scotland can build upon our strong foundation in supporting GME.

“SQA will continue to work with the Àrd-sgoil Ghàidhlig Ghlaschu and in support of GME across Scotland to deliver upon the promise of ‘Da chanan, da chultar, iomadh cothrom’ (two languages, two cultures, many opportunities).

“We do this through our teams of Liaison and Regional Managers, who work with schools across the country daily, giving them advice and support in the delivery of qualifications.

“It is so important that we listen to the views of those we serve, and I will be taking back what I have seen and heard today to my teams, so we can deliver in the best way we can.

“I want to sincerely thank the staff and pupils of the Glasgow Gaelic School for the time we spent together today and wish all the young people good luck in their studies this year.”