Scenarios for compulsory education – Pupils

Preliminary note: Ukrainian refugees

These scenarios do not take into account the inflow of Ukrainian refugees into Switzerland in 2022. There is still too much uncertainty about their number, distribution, length of stay, educational needs and levels of skill and it is too early to provide reliable figures on future developments.

New scenarios: sustained increase in the number of pupils at all levels

The 2022-2031 education system scenarios of the FSO published on 9th September 2022 confirm that the number of pupils at all levels of compulsory education (primary 1-2, primary 3-8 and lower secondary) is expected to grow over the next ten years. Mainly due to the increase in the number of births observed since 2004, the increases expected from 2021 to 2031 in the reference scenario are as follows:

  • +8.2% in primary level 1-2 (from 178 400 to 192 900 pupils), with the increase recorded since 2008 first pausing before resuming from 2025;
  • +8.4% in primary level 3-8 (from 514 500 to 557 700 pupils), continuing the progression begun in 2013;
  • +11.4% in lower secondary level (from 249 900 to 278 500 pupils), with a new phase of growth that started in 2018.

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

Statistical sources and concepts


Federal Statistical Office Section Education System
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