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National Report on Education 2022: Interrupted educational biographies particularly common among individuals with migration background

Educational biographies are becoming increasingly diverse. Individuals with migration background, including immigrants, are particularly affected by interruptions in their educational biographies in Germany. This is shown in the 9th National Report on Education, which has now been presented on the basis of data from the National Educational Panel Study (NEPS). Apart from that the education report contains encouraging news for children who are still lagging behind in vocabulary and math skills at kindergarten age: Over the course of kindergarten and elementary school, about three-quarters show high gains in at least one skill area, and more than a third even in both. And girls are particularly strong in catching up during this period.

Large differences in educational and employment biographies
Educational trajectories and transitions in Germany are increasingly diverse. People with an immigrant background are particularly affected by interruptions after leaving school. For example, 9 % of them do not have a job or drop out of education after non-high school attendance (among people without a migration background, the figure is 5.5 %).  But revising educational decisions and catching up on schooling and vocational qualifications are also common in other population groups. "Life paths today are highly differentiated. Education policy action and corresponding programs should therefore also no longer be oriented exclusively to a 'normal career biography,'" says Prof. Dr. Cordula Artelt, director of the Leibniz Institute for Educational Trajectories (LIfBi) and co-author of the National Report on Education.

Elementary school helps catch up on skills
There is good news in terms of educational progress during the preschool and elementary school years: for example, 76 % of children who still have a low competency profile in math and vocabulary in the 2nd or 3rd year of kindergarten have high gains in at least one competency area from kindergarten to the end of elementary school, 36 % even in both. During the school years, the greatest growth in mathematical competencies can be observed in the four primary school years in particular. In addition, girls catch up particularly strongly in mathematical competencies during this period and catch up with boys at the end of primary school.

NEPS data for national eductaion reporting
LIfBi has compiled the findings on the above topics and others for the chapter "Educational Trajectories, Competence Development and Returns on Education" of this year's National Report on Education. It provides an overview of long-term educational biographies of people in Germany, focusing on different educational conditions, prerequisites and yields. "The report is a significant tool for monitoring lines of development for education policy, education administration and practice," says Artelt. The report is based, among other things, on data from the NEPS, the largest long-term social science study of educational trajectories in Germany, for which LIfBi is responsible.


The 9th National Education Report was published on June 23, 2022 (external link)

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