New Education Minister: raising standards

Her choice of Education Minister will be a defining element of Nicola Sturgeon’s likely cabinet reshuffle and of her first full five-year term as First Minister. The agenda could not be tougher or more complex – and the selection of the minister and team full of pitfalls. Here are a few pointers – and runners and riders.

Scientists at the top – but not on tap

Five Scottish-based scientists have just been elected Fellow of the Royal Society. But, in Scotland, the Scottish Government appears to have downgraded the post of chief scientific officer – vacant for almost 18 months. In earlier times scientists such as Robert Moray occupied key political roles; nowadays they’re shunned by politicians.

Five more years: dull it won’t be

Lots of commentators – we too – have dismissed the next term in the Scottish Parliament as heralding at best managerial competence, at worst policy timorousness. But there’s plenty to look forward to: not least how the SNP in government handles the SNP.

The Sun, the SNP and a new Scotland

Politicians are in the game of professional cynicism, argues Loki in his latest philippic. Posing with and for The Sun goes with the territory. Yet we were promised a new politics in Scotland, not the same old kowtowing to lobbies. The SNP needs to keep its radical fire-power.

Scotland shakes up the Brexit cards

The Remain and Leave campus are neck-and-neck in the run-up to the June 23 EU referendum so where does that leave Scotland – and Nicola Sturgeon’s on-off desire for #indyref2 in the event of a vote for Brexit? Four scenarios set out here…

Seize the day

Kathleen Jamie – you can listen to one of Scotland’s premier poets here – asks how many glorious May dawns she’s slept through as Spring bursts upon us and we head for the polls…