Croatia has the lowest early school-leaving rate in the European Union, however, basic skills have declined and are below the EU average, reported the EU Commission.
The European Commission’s annual comparative report Education and Training Monitor 2017 encompasses 28 country reports about education system and training in EU member countries. The country reports explore investment in education and training and national policies to modernize school education, higher education, vocational education and adult learning.
‘’Croatia is one of the countries where the impact of the education system is relatively weak, and the situation has worsened over the past few years’’, emphasized Stefaan Hermans, the director of the EU Commission’s Directorate General for Education and Culture at the report presentation held at the House of Europe.
The report shows that Croatia has a very low early school leaving rate (2,8%), the lowest in the EU, which is among the main strengths of the country's education system.
However, basic skills have declined and are below the EU average. There are differences in performance linked to socioeconomic status, but the quality of curricula and teaching appear to be the main driver of Croatia’s poor performance. Furthermore, participation rates in early childhood education and care and in adult education are among the lowest compared to other EU member countries.
The report also shows that despite recent robust economic growth and a more promising labour market situation, low skill levels need to be addressed. The same applies to the relevance of skills acquired in vocational and higher education.
Even though a number of reforms have been prepared in the context of the Strategy for Education, Science and Technology and the associated curricular reform, progress in 2017 has been limited.
In addition, Stefaan Hermans pointed out that education is a matter of the future, which is why it is important to improve the education system, thus Croatia, as well as other EU member countries, have the support of the European Union.