The school dropout rate in the Netherlands was reduced in recent years to 8.8 percent in 2012. The rate across the EU was also gradually reduced. The reduction of school dropouts is high on the national and international policy agenda.
Fewer girls than boys leave school prematurely
The school dropout rate among 18 to 24-year-olds in the Netherlands declined from more than 14 percent in 2003 to nearly 9 percent in 2012. The dropout rate among girls is lower than among boys (7 percent versus more than 10 percent). Over the last four years, boys mainly accounted for the reduction of the total school dropout rate.
Proportion of school dropouts in the Netherlands
Proportion of school dropouts in the EU gradually down
The average dropout rate across the 28 EU member states was just under 13 percent. The EU percentage is also lower than in 2003, when it was more than 16 percent. Among the EU member states, the Netherlands was in tenth place in 2012. The rate in the Netherlands is marginally lower than in the adjacent countries Belgium and Germany.
National target still out of reach
The EU seeks to reduce the school dropout rate among 18 to 24-year-olds to 10 percent in 2020. The target for the Netherlands is set at 8 percent. The Dutch rate of 8.8 percent in 2012 meets the EU target, but fails to meet the national target. Germany all but achieved its national target of 10 percent in 2012. As yet, Belgium has not met its national target of 9.5 percent.
Eurostat, Early leavers from education and training by sex