The performance of Aberdeenshire pupils in exams in recent years was recently discussed by the education, learning and leisure committee.
A report before councillors outlined that although attainment in Aberdeenshire this year is in line, or better than, the national average, it is not as strong as it previously was.
In terms of comparator authorities, it is only at S4 that Aberdeenshire remains above the average.
Speaking before the committee, Quality Improvement Officer Gordon Lennon said there were no fixed trends between schools or year groups across Aberdeenshire, however.
He said exams attainment is built upon levels of achievement in earlier years of education and that the service is to introduce standardised assessments across all primary and secondary schools to monitor attainment at each stage of education.