Page last updated at 12:58 GMT, Thursday, 29 March 2012 13:58 UK

Scottish Parliament

Alex Salmond urged unions and bosses to resolve the dispute with fuel tanker drivers, during first minister's questions on 29 March 2012.

The first minister also stressed the need for "cool heads" as he said: "I think more government preparation is what is required to promote calm and orderly behaviour in the population at large."

Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie urged the first minister to outline how the Scottish government would use new borrowing powers for Holyrood.

Mr Rennie asked why the SNP had decided to support the Scotland Bill when its demands had not been met.

He said: "If he tears up his red lines like this on devolution, how will he manage on independence when he has to negotiate with the rest of the world?"

The Scottish Lib Dem leader added: "The Scotland Bill is a major step forward. These powers are coming soon."

Mr Salmond said the Scotland Bill had been "overtaken by events", given the moves towards holding a referendum on independence.

Earlier Johann Lamont, the Scottish Labour leader, challenged the first minister over his government's record on literacy and numeracy levels in secondary school.

More than half of S2 pupils are not doing well at maths, according to Scotland's first national survey.

But the Scottish Survey of Literacy and Numeracy (SSLN) suggested primary pupils were performing at a high standard in the subject.

Ms Lamont pointed out that in S2 only 42% pupils were performing well or very well.

She said Education Secretary Mike Russell had "got the dunces cap" as a result.

Mr Salmond highlighted the high attainment levels in primary schools.

He added numeracy and literacy were important in the chamber too, following mistakes by Ms Lamont when she said the government had pledged to provide a nursery school teacher for every pupil and two hours P.E every day, instead of every week.

Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson also hit out at the first minister over the literacy and numeracy levels in secondary school, accusing the SNP government of being on course to fail a "generation of school children" by the end of this government.

The first minister said this was the first time such a survey had been carried out and again highlighted the "exceptional figures" at primary school level.

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