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Education Today 2013

The OECD Perspective

image of Education Today 2013

What does the OECD have to say about the state of education today? What are the main OECD messages on early childhood education, teacher policies and tertiary education? What about student performance, educational spending and equity in education? OECD work on these important education topics and others have been brought together in a single accessible source updating the first edition of Education Today which came out in March 2009.

Organised into eight chapters, this report examines early childhood education, schooling, transitions beyond initial education, higher education, adult learning, outcomes and returns, equity, and innovation. The chapters are structured around key findings and policy directions emerging from recent OECD educational analyses. Each entry highlights the main message in a concise and accessible way, with a brief explanation and reference to the original OECD source.

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Transitions Beyond Initial Education

Centre for Educational Research and Innovation

The OECD has examined arrangements and policies surrounding the transitions beyond compulsory schooling. Extended education to at least completion of the upper secondary cycle is increasingly the norm right now across the OECD countries. Alongside shared patterns are marked differences on such matters as the relative proportions who engage in general or vocational study, as well as the possibilities to combine education with employment. Vocational education and training – which have tended to be neglected in countries compared with general school and university programmes, and which often do not well meet labour market needs – have been the focus of recent OECD review, with the publication Learning for Jobs. OECD policy orientations have stressed the need to improve the existence, diversity, relevance and transparency of different pathways, and the need to integrate them into a lifelong learning perspective, while protecting those left most vulnerable as others advance to further education and employment. The OECD recently released its Skills Strategy, an integrated, cross-government strategic framework that aims to help countries to identify the strengths and weaknesses of their existing national skills pool and skills systems, benchmark them internationally, and develop policies for improvement.

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