Private Schools in Germany: Attendance up, but Not Among the Children of Less Educated Parents
The percentage of children attending private school in Germany has increased sharply in recent years. According to data of the German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP), 7% of all students now attend private school. The SOEP, which contains a range of household data, shows that the children of parents with a university entry degree ("Abitur") are more likely to attend private school than those with less educated parents. This trend has become more pronounced in recent years: between 1997 and 2007, the percentage of students with better-educated parents attending private school increased by 77%. By contrast, the corresponding increase for students with less-educated parents was only 12%. Multivariate analyses demonstrate that increasing selection in favor of better-educated groups is particularly evident at the secondary school level. At the primary school level, full-time employment of the mother and regional factors significantly increase the chances of private school attendance. Educational policy should focus on preventing children from better-educated groups from leaving the public school system. If competition among schools is to be encouraged as a matter of policy, efforts should also be made to ensure less educated families consider sending their children to private schools.
Volume (Year): 5 (2009)
Issue (Month): 29 ()
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