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Social inequalities in upper secondary education drop-outs (C)


Drop-out in upper secondary education, difference between the group whose parents have compulsory education as the highest completed education and the group whose parents have a tertiary education (beyond upper secondary). The difference is presented in number of percentage points difference in the rates of drop-outs in the two groups.

Three year averages are used to smooth out the effects of random changes in results from year to year due to a small numbers.

The rates include persons who started the basic course in secondary education for the first time in a given year and who have completed VKII (finishing upper secondary education) or the vocational examinations («fagprøve»), but who have failed one or more subjects and therefore have not achieved educational or vocational skills after five years, as well as students who started that year, but who stopped along the way. The percentage is calculated from the percentage of people who started a basic course in upper secondary education that year. Persons who after 5 years are still in upper secondary education are not considered to have dropped out.

A person who started their upper secondary education in one county, is counted as having completed/dropped out of upper secondary education there, though he or she may have moved.

Basic qualifications are not considered a completed secondary education. Persons who started upper secondary education and end up with a certificate of competence will therefore be considered to have dropped out.

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Two measures are available. Use the Measure button to select:
1. Difference = the number of percentage point of difference in the rate of drop-outs between two educational groups, in the 3-year period
2. Ratio (Norway = 100) = Ratio between the county's percentage and the national percentage for a given year. Examples; ratio = 130 means that the county's percentage is 30% higher than the national level. A ratio of 87 means that the county's percentage is 13% lower than the national level.

Parental educational groups are defined as follows:
- Compulsory education (primary and lower secondary school)
- Tertiary education (university or college education or having obtained 120 credits or more).

Rationale for indicator
The difference in drop-out rates between two groups based on parental education, is an indicator of social inequality in dropping out from upper secondary school.

There are well-documented correlations between level of educational attainment, material living conditions and health are well established. Individuals who have not completed upper secondary education are regarded as being exposed to the same risk of adverse living conditions and health problems as those who opted out of continuing their education upon completing compulsory (lower secondary) school.
Statistics Norway (SSB)
The statistics include Statistics Norway's statistics on the population's level of education and statistics for throughput in secondary education.

The data on throughput are registry data collected from the county intake system VIGO.
The main function of VIGO is managing admissions to the various grades of secondary education and to administrate the right to a secondary education for the citizens of each county. Students at all county schools are registered and monitored in VIGO. In addition, VIGO integrates, through separate intake procedures, data about students at independent schools and state schools with activities covered by the Education Act.

In order to create throughput statistics, it is necessary also to obtain information about the results of secondary education. Here multiple data sources are used. Information on whether a student has passed the course in VIGO is one of these. The major categories of course results are passed, failed, and interrupted. These results are measured at each course level.

For completed VKII, data on completed education from the VIGO intake for pupils, and data on completed professional examinations for vocational students, are collected.
For diploma students data since 2001 are supplemented with information from the National diplomas database (NVB). In addition, the authorization registry for healthcare (HPR) is used to supplement the information about completed training within the health sector.
Interpretation and sources of error
Statistics on educational attainment and drop-outs, and the correlation between these and health, may be influenced by local conditions, such as the labour market.

In evaluating these figures, it is important to be aware that there are differences in drop-out rates between students of academic subjects and students in vocational training, with higher rates among vocational students.
Data quality
Figures for persons who have not completed upper secondary education may be slightly too high, because some completed educations have not yet been reported (reporting backlog).
When numbers are missing
Statistics based on fewer than 3 cases in at least one of the educational categories are hidden for reasons of personal data protection. This criterion concerns the sum of cases in the period for which an average has been constructed. Figures are also hidden when the population group in which the cases originate, is smaller than 10 persons. In addition, statistics for a subgroup are hidden if the number for this subgroup, along with the number for the main group, could be used to derive a number that is hidden for privacy reasons.

If more than 20 per cent of the cases in a time series are hidden due to the above mentioned reasons, the complete time series is hidden to avoid giving a skewed impression.
The complete time series is also hidden if more than 50 per cent of the values in the series are based on 6 or fewer cases in at least one of the educational categories.
Time periods
3-year averages from 2010-2012 to 2015-2017
Geographical level
Norway, Health regions and Counties
Both genders, men and women
Frequency of updates
Last updated

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