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Higher requirements for new upper secondary school

Press release 29 April 2009


The Government today referred the proposal for a new upper secondary school to the Council on Legislation. It includes several proposals to raise the quality and status of vocational training: a vocational qualification, more time to be devoted to vocational subjects in vocational programmes and the business sector to be given greater influence over the programmes.

"For far too long school policy has only concerned theoretical studies. We are focusing on vocational programmes," says Minister for Education Jan Björklund.

The Government also wants to raise the requirements for theoretical programmes. A qualification that prepares pupils for higher education will be introduced and this will impose higher requirements than is currently the case for obtaining basic eligibility for higher education.

Reduce options in upper secondarz education: local curricula abolished

The proposal referred to the Council on Legislation also contains proposals to reduce options in upper secondary school by restricting local alternatives. Local courses, local specialisations and specially designed programmes will be abolished and a school will only be able to start its own course or programme specialisation after approval by the National Agency for Education.

"The schools will not be allowed to attract pupils by reducing requirements," says Mr Björklund.

About the proposals

It is proposed that the new upper secondary school will include twelve vocational programmes and six preparatory programmes for higher education.

Vocational programmes: [/strong]

- Child and Recreation programme

- Construction and Civil Engineering programme

- Electrical and Energy Engineering programme

- Vehicles and Transport programme

- Trade and Administration programme

- Handicraft programme

- Hotel and Tourism programme

- Industrial Engineering programme

- Natural Resources Management programme

- Restaurant Management and Food programme

- HVAC and Building Services programme

- Health and Social Care programme

Preparatory programmes for higher education: [1]

- Economics programme

- Arts programme

- Humanities programme

- Natural Sciences programme

- Social Sciences programme

- Technology programme

The national specialisations to be included in the various programmes will be decided by the Government on the advice of the National Agency for Education.

Design of the programmes
Vocational programmes will increase the time devoted to vocational subjects from the current 1 350 credits to 1 600 upper secondary school credits and upper secondary apprenticeship training will be introduced as an alternative in these programmes.

Today’s core subjects will be replaced by subjects common to all upper secondary programmes, which may vary in scope from programme to programme. History will be a new common subject at upper secondary level.

Local alternatives
Specially designed programmes, local specialisations and local courses will be abolished. A new course, or a special alternative, i.e. a special variant of a national programme, will only be allowed after quality and needs have been reviewed and approved by the National Agency for Education.

Eligibility and examinations
To be eligible for preparatory programmes for higher education the pupil must have pass marks in Swedish/Swedish as a second language, English, mathematics and at least nine other subjects. Individuals without a pass mark in English may be considered eligible on certain conditions. The Government will submit proposals for eligibility requirements for vocational programmes at a later date.

Two different examinations will be introduced at upper secondary level: preparatory qualification for higher education and vocational qualification. The requirements for the qualification are that the pupil has a certificate from a national programme covering at least 2 500 upper secondary credits, with pass grades in at least 2 250 credits, including certain courses and an upper secondary certificate project.

For basic eligibility for higher education the same requirements as for the preparatory qualification for higher education will apply. Pupils in vocational programmes will be given the right to read the courses required to achieve basic eligibility in their individual options and as an augmented programme. Individuals with a vocational qualification will also be entitled to read these courses in upper secondary adult education.

Other matters
A new grade scale, A-F, will be introduced at the same time in the new upper secondary school. Pupils will be awarded grades after each completed course and after completing an upper secondary certificate project.

The proposed qualifications and grades will also apply to upper secondary adult education.

The new upper secondary school will start in the autumn term of 2011.

Summary - the most important changes

- Higher eligibility requirements for upper secondary school.

- More time for vocational subjects, less for general theory in the vocational programmes.

- Streamlining of options.

- Apprenticeship training will be introduced.

- History will be compulsory.

- More stringent requirements for basic eligibility for higher education.

- The business sector will be able to influence vocational programmes.

Anna Neuman
Pressekreterare hos Jan Björklund
08-405 25 03
070-188 65 55

Subject area: Education and research
Minister: Jan Björklund

[/strong] In Italia è l’istrtuzione tecnica e professionale

[1] In Italia i licei