Responding to the news that Scotland has recorded its worst ever results for science and maths in the PISA international comparison of education systems across the world, with England performing better in every measure, Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie commented:
"John Swinney can't hide from these appalling results.Scotland used to have one of the best education systems in the world, but under the SNP its now just average.
"Scottish teachers have been messed about for too long. John Swinney has refused to listen to them. Support in their classrooms has been cut to the bone and they simply don't believe in the policies being imposed on them, not least the national testing of four and five-year-olds.
"Nicola Sturgeon once claimed education was her top priority, but nobody is now in any doubt that the SNP will always put independence first no matter the cost. Their chief civil servant has warned another independence campaign will lead to the 'de-prioritisation' of domestic policy, but the SNP simply don't care about the damage and distraction it will cause.
"Instead, we can build a brighter future by making it stop and investing in education. Liberal Democrats will i increase school budgets and respect and restore the role of teachers in Scottish classrooms through McCrone 2 - an independent review of their workloads and conditions."