Scenarios for compulsory education – Pupils

Impact of COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic is currently having a significant effect on many aspects of daily life and on the behaviour of those involved in the education system, i.e. individuals, companies and institutions.

Since all children of compulsory school age must attend compulsory education, the 2020-2029 scenarios for compulsory education do not, however, include specific assumptions related to COVID-19.

In the short term, the results of the scenarios must therefore be interpreted with some caution. In the long term, they should hardly be affected by the consequences of the pandemic, unless the pandemic has repercussions on demographic development.

New scenarios

The 2020-2029 education system scenarios of the FSO published on 23th November 2020 confirm that the number of compulsory education pupils should grow at all levels (primary 1-2, primary 3-8 and lower secondary) during the next 10 years. Mainly due to the increase in the number of births since 2004, the rises expected from 2019 to 2029 according to the reference scenario are as follows:

  • +6,5% at primary level 1-2 (from 175,600 up to 186,900 pupils), continuing the growth observed since 2008;
  • +7,5% at primary level 3-8 (from 502,800 up to 540,300 pupils), extending the increase that began in 2013;
  • +13% at lower secondary level (from 241,200 up to 273,000 pupils), with a new phase of growth beginning in 2018.

At all levels, anticipated developments at cantonal level sometimes differ markedly from those calculated at Swiss level, notably because the different cantons have varying demographic dynamics.

Statistical sources and concepts


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