FEWER than half of Glasgow's schools are meeting their targets... but education bosses say they are "closing the gap".

Today the Evening Times prints league tables for city secondaries.

And these show 16 of 30 high schools did not meet Scottish Government targets.

But, with high levels of poverty having a major impact on education success, executive director for education Maureen McKenna said city pupils should still be proud.

She said: “Our schools and young people should be very proud of their exam results - last year they recorded Glasgow’s best ever results.

“We want the best for each and every young person in the city and we have a dedicated and committed staff in our schools that guide and mentor our young people to reach their full potential.

“I am delighted with the success of our schools but we will continue to close the gap and offer every opportunity to our children regardless of their circumstances.”

The Scottish Government provides information about each school but does not create its own league tables.

Today the Evening Times has drawn tables for Glasgow and surrounding local authorities to allow parents to judge how well their school is performing.

Education bosses last year changed the way figures are presented. Now, data is given for "school leavers" rather than for individual year groups.

This can mean schools where pupils stay on until sixth year fare better.

Free school meals, the benchmark of poverty in a school, was replaced with Scottish Index of Multiple Deprivation (SIMD) figures, which divide children into five levels.

Level 1 represents children living in the 20% most impoverished postcodes. Where there are fewer than five pupils in Level 1, an asterisk is used.

And a "virtual comparator" school is created by Education Scotland to show how a school should be performing given the socio-economic background of its pupils.

We look at the percentage of school leavers gaining three or more Highers and compare this to the benchmark.

Glasgow Gaelic School was top of the league table for a second year running with 84 per cent of its pupils gaining three or more Highers, against a benchmark of 64 per cent.

It has five or fewer pupils in the SIMD quintile one.

Hyndland Secondary came second with 61 per cent of pupils meeting the three plus target and Notre Dame, where 57 per cent of pupils made the grade, was third.

The three schools at the bottom of the league table all have the highest levels of deprivation in the city.

Lochend Community High had the lowest results in Glasgow. With an SIMD Level 1 percentage of 89, 23 per cent of pupils were predicted to gain three or more Highers.

Instead, 9 per cent did.

Govan High's benchmark was 25 per cent but instead only 18 per cent gained three or more Highers.

Drumchapel High was last on the table in 2015 and this year it is third from bottom. Some 19 per cent of its pupils gained three or more Highers, against a benchmark of 18 per cent.

Head teacher Brian Brady, of St Margaret Mary's Secondary in Castlemilk, said the biggest challenge for his school is persuading pupils they are just as deserving of success as pupils in more affluent areas.

At St Margaret Mary's, 86% of its school leavers are in the most deprived SIMD percentage.

By comparison, just over the border in East Renfrewshire, St Ninian's High School has fewer than five children, if any, in that category.

Mr Brady said: "Our pupils in some respects have a bit less self-belief than pupils in, shall we say, leafier suburbs and we are trying to compensate for that and trying to make them believe they can have a positive outcome, that they can get to university.

"We provide support within the school that other pupils at other schools would get at home or from private tutors. For example, we provide supported study and we're setting up an Easter study programme to help pupils with their work.

"We want them to have the self-esteem to believe they can achieve anything they want to."

Evening Times:

Last year, St Margaret Mary's school leavers achieved 22% earning three of more Highers and this year that figure is up to 25%.

Mr Brady, who has been head of the Castlemilk school for five years, added: "I have two fantastic deputies who both have a maths programme so they are great at analysing data and following each pupil.

"We are very much about individuals and tailoring teaching to each pupil, keeping an eye for when they might stray off the path a little or need more encouragement.

"One of the great things about Glasgow is that we believe in individual local plans so our approach is unique to our school.

"And our approach is a very academic one. My ambition is that all our pupils leave school with at least two Highers because that paves the way for an HND or HNC.

"Another difficulty is networks. If we need a solicitor or someone from a medical background to give our pupils work experience then we need to actively look for them as our pupils don't have those ready-made networks.

"We have chosen an academic approach because our pupils are competing with those coming from St Aloysius or the High School of Glasgow so they need to have exactly the same academic qualifications.

"There's nothing to make it easier for them."

Evening Times: