A north-east secondary school pupil has come top of the class to be named the best student in Scotland.
The accolade has capped a remarkable turnaround for Kiara Ross who was at risk of falling out of the academic system just two years ago.
When she was in S4, the teenager, who is now 17 years old, was being regularly excluded from classes and was not interested in learning.
However, the Elgin High School pupil committed to turning her life around when she realised she was at risk of not fulfilling her ambition of becoming a family lawyer.
Kiara has also overcome the barrier of being too shy to meet a mentor from the Career Ready programme, which aims to increase the employment chances for youngsters.
Now she has four conditional offers from universities so that she can fulfil her ambitions after gaining work experience at Elgin Sheriff Court with a solicitor.
Kiara, of Elgin, said: “Between the ages of 14 and 15 I felt like everything that could go wrong, did.
“I didn’t know why my life seemed so different to my friends. Nothing made sense and I felt trapped in a vicious cycle.
“I joined Career Ready in 2016 and I’ve got a great network around me now. My relationships with teachers, family and friends has completely changed for the better.
“I’ve matured, and I’m driven.”
Kiara was named Career Ready’s Scottish student of the year at a ceremony in Perth in front of representatives of schools from across the country, including 36 nominees from Moray.
Judges praised the teenager for her attitude, resilience and commitment to taking control of her own future.
Kiara’s mentor, Karen Lees, who is a quality improvement officer for Moray Council, said: “She is a confident young lady who is ready to grasp the challenges and rewards available to her in the next stages of her learning and in life beyond school.”