Pupils who receive their SQA results today are being encouraged to make use of a free national helpline offering advice, information and support.

The Skills Development Scotland service on 0808 100 8000 is staffed by qualified careers advisers and is available from 8am to 8pm today and tomorrow and from 9am to 5pm between August 10 and 16.

Falkirk West MSP Michael Matheson said: “Leaving school is the start of an exciting new chapter in young people’s lives but it can also be an anxious time, especially if you didn’t achieve the grades you’d hoped for.

“The reality is that there are many options to consider going forward and the experienced careers advisers who are staffing this free helpline will be able to give valuable advice and support to school leavers and their parents.

“This excellent service could also be useful for students who did better than expected and want to explore the additional opportunities this has opened up for them.

“Whatever your results, there is a path forward and people who are ready to help you make the best decision about your future.”

James Russell, acting director of operations at Skills Development Scotland, added: “Our message for young people and their parents as the results arrive is not to panic.
“Everything might seem overwhelming at this point but our experienced advisers are there to help and have information on all the options and opportunities students can consider.”