The proportion of young people who leave school early (before obtaining an upper secondary level diploma) provides information on the educational pathways of students within the education system. It can be seen as an indicator of the effectiveness of this system to keep and train young people to a minimum level of education necessary to their personal and professional fulfilment and its ability to foster in them a certain culture of learning (learning to learn). Leaving the education system before obtaining such a diploma reduces young people’s chances of long-term labour market participation, involving a series of problems (unemployment, risk of poverty, etc.) that have a negative effect on the integration process.
In 2019, nearly 12% of young people aged 18 to 24 who belong to the first generation and 5% of people from the second generation left school early. This last rate is not significantly higher than the one among young people of the same age with no migration background whose rate is less than 4%.
By observing the proportion of early school leavers by nationality and place of birth or by migration status, it can be shown that between 2011 and 2014 and between 2013 and 2019, the results of the population groups coincide. The proportion of Swiss and foreign nationals born in Switzerland as well as that of Swiss nationals born abroad who leave school early remained constant, whereas that of foreign nationals born abroad fell by 8.9 percentage points. The proportion of young people leaving school early among the population without a migration background and among the second or subsequent generations also remained stable between 2013 and 2019. The rate of the first generation decreased of 6.2 percentage points between 2013 and 2019.
Young people aged 18 to 24 with no post-compulsory education training and education who leave school early without entering other types of training in the permanent resident population of the same age. The level “no post-compulsory education and training” includes people who finished compulsory education or finishing training of one year at most in a general education school or who undertook language or household training.