Ulrike Wisser, Brussels (EU, Belgium)
Eurydice, a European network on information about education systems in Europe recently published key figures on education 2009 in 31 European countries.
It describes furthermore main developments on organisational and out-put oriented questions, based on 121 indicators. The report identifies both major positive trends and serious challenges for education systems across Europe.
Positive news include: the increasing enrolment of 4-year olds in pre-school education,a significant rise in the numbers of students in higher education and a general trend towards longer periods of compulsory schooling. Among the important future challenges to be addressed will be demographic change, which means both fewer children of school age in Europe and teacher retirement on a very large scale in many countries in the near future.
The report also states a universal trend to greater autonomy of schools in Europe. This trend goes together with an increase of regular and systematic monitoring and out-put evaluation of educational systems, institutions and educational staff. This more intensive general use of evaluation in the education system is considered as a cultural change for most of the European countries. What varies very much, states the report are strategies on the publication of those evaluation results. Only a few countries inform the public regularly about outcomes.
Read more here
Ulrike Wisser works as policy adviser in the field of EU youth, education and social politics at BBJ Servis gGmbH, Brussels office.
Picture : www.pixelio.de (Photographer: Dieter Schütz)