Schooling in Spain

Poor performance of pupils attending Spanish schools.

According to a report released today by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), 30 percent of Spanish children attending schools fail their exams. This is one of the worst performances among European countries.

In Spain almost three out of ten school pupils have to retake a whole academic year at least once during their schooling.

Although the report acknowledges the “enormous improvements” made in the Spanish education system during the last three decades, it signals out secondary education and the high percentage of pupils who have to repeat an academic year as Spain’s “weak points”.

The report is critical of the Spanish system which forces high numbers of failing students to retake their previous year, because there is no proof that it encourages or enables pupils to catch up later on, and because each repeating pupil represents extra state expense.

On a happier note, according to the report the teacher:pupil ratio in Spain is one of the best in Europe with 19.3 pupils per class in state primary education, compared to the OECD average of 21.5. However class numbers tend to be higher in private schools (rather paradoxically), where the average is 24.3 pupils compared to the OECD average class size in private primary education of 20.3 pupils.

In secondary education however both state and private schools ratios perform poorly compared to the OECD average. The average class size in state secondary schools in Spain is 24, compared to 22.8 OECD, while the average class size in private secondary schools in Spain is 26.9 – well above the OECD average for private secondary education which stands as 22.

8 pupils per

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