07 February
Teacher in classroom

Data - published by the Scottish Government - highlights that there were 2,058 teachers employed by West Lothian Council in December 2022 compared to 1,909 in December 2019.

Recent funding from the Scottish Government provided West Lothian Council with £5.6 million to recruit more teachers and support staff. 100% of this funding has been allocated by the council to provide an additional 83.41 full time equivalent (FTE) teachers and 19.81 FTE pupil support workers in 2022/23.

However, over the last three years, West Lothian Council has invested additional funding from its own resources to increase the number of teachers further. West Lothian Council's additional funding has meant that there are now 149 additional teachers working in West Lothian's  classrooms compared to December 2019.

Executive councillor for Education Andrew McGuire said: "The Scottish Government's own data is clear and highlights the council has significantly increased teacher numbers as part of our commitment to improving the standard of education within West Lothian.

"Some of the recent media coverage on this issue has been clouded, inaccurate and confusing for many people.

"What parents want to know is that teacher numbers have increased and that attainment in West Lothian has risen year on year. We have had a decade of continued achievement for West Lothian schools in terms of exam results and investment in school buildings."

West Lothian Council's Depute Chief Executive Dr Elaine Cook added: "Teacher numbers has been a complex issue as much of the funding provided to us by the Scottish Government in 2021 was a temporary one-off funding package to support schools during the pandemic and subsequent recovery period.

"By its very definition one off funding can only be spent once and does not allow us to maintain the same level of spending in subsequent years. However, in autumn 2021, the Scottish Government confirmed that some of the temporary funding was being made permanent, all of which has been used to employ staff in permanent contracts. 

"I can assure parents and teachers that we have many more teachers working in West Lothian schools than we did three years ago and that all funding provided to us to increase teacher numbers has been spent - in full - on providing additional school staff. All funding has been utilised in accordance with guidelines provided by the Scottish Government."