Aberdeen’s education and housing ‘underperforming’

Aberdeen City Council told it must significantly improve the two key services.

Aberdeen’s education and housing ‘underperforming’ SNS Group

Aberdeen City Council needs to tackle its “underperforming education and housing services”, a report has found.

Public spending watchdog the Accounts Commission said the local authority had improved its performance over the past five years.

But it warned that the two key services of housing and education must get significantly better.

Elma Murray, interim chair of the Accounts Commission, said: “The council has an innovative outlook in delivering a new economic vision for the city, working well with its partners to achieve this.

“But it will continue to face significant financial pressures, made more pronounced by Covid-19.

“The pandemic is exacerbating inequalities for many across Scotland, and we urge the council to ensure it can support and improve the lives of those vulnerable communities in Aberdeen.

The commission said Aberdeen Council ranked among the lowest in Scotland for satisfaction with schools, with the poverty-related attainment gap for students one of the widest in the country.

Performance across many of its housing services also fell well below the national average.

The report added that while the council was already acting to address these issues, it was “crucial” that improvement happens faster.

Aberdeen City Council leader Jenny Laing said: “We have demonstrated significant improvements in key areas since the 2015 Best Value report, helping the council deliver major building projects at pace, vital public services within budget and at the same time make significant savings without impacting on local services.

“Our own internal analysis indicates we are currently on a trend of increasing attainment, and with visible closing of the attainment gap between our most and least deprived pupils, and we look forward to sharing these results in due course.

“Despite decreasing performance in housing repairs and antisocial behaviour, we remain above national average in these areas, and our performance in homelessness services is sector-leading.

“However, we cannot be complacent and are working closely with staff on a service redesign that will bring much-needed benefits for our tenants and our own teams.”

STV News is now on WhatsApp

Get all the latest news from around the country

Follow STV News
Follow STV News on WhatsApp

Scan the QR code on your mobile device for all the latest news from around the country

WhatsApp channel QR Code