Early leaving from education and training and underachievement: SCIREARLY takes action

Friday 1 September 2023

Home » Higher Education and Research » Early leaving from education and training and underachievement: SCIREARLY takes action

Early leaving from education and training and underachievement in PISA tests (Programme for International Student Assessment) are complex and worrying challenges for some education systems in Europe. These problems have been afflicting some countries for years now and draw attention to the structural deficiencies of their school system and the quality of education in their country, highlighting the need to review teaching strategies and educational policies.

Alongside the explicit early school leaving, occurring when students make a direct and conscious decision to drop out of their studies without completing a cycle, there is also implicit early school leaving, which is more difficult to detect because it consists of a progressive reduction in participation in school activities, linked to a loss of interest and increasingly low results.

Besides, PISA scores are still uneven in Europe, and students’ proficiency in critical subjects like math, reading, and science remains subpar in some countries, reflecting systemic issues and significant educational challenges.

Early leaving from education and training and underachievement limit individual growth potential of young people, and have enormous social consequences, as they limit the availability of skilled human resources thus slowing economic growth, generate social inequality with pressure on the welfare system, and prevent people from fully participating in civic and political life, affecting democracy and social stability. Addressing these phenomena requires innovative solutions and school policies based on empirical research, accurate data, effective teaching practices and success stories.

In response to this challenge, we have launched SCIREARLY. SCIREARLY represents an important step towards high quality education for all, regardless of students’ background or vulnerabilities.

The project aims to explore the reality of European schools by closely analysing the educational dynamics from early years to secondary education. Once the best practices and most effective learning environments have been identified, SCIREARLY aims to disseminate and replicate them in other schools. This process of sharing and adopting best practices will provide students, teachers, families and schools with valuable tools to improve educational outcomes and create a favourable environment for learning and the psycho-emotional well-being of young people. In addition, students with special backgrounds or vulnerabilities that might put them at greater risk of low achievement or dropping out of school will be targeted.

Over the next three years, SCIREARLY will actively collaborate with teachers, families, stakeholders and policy makers to co-create solutions to improve educational processes. Addressing these issues requires a collective commitment of all parties involved. If you would like to participate in the research and give us information about your country, please contact Alessia Valenti, alessia.valenti@cesie.org.

About the project

SCIREARLY – Policies and Practices based on Scientific Research for Reducing Underachievement and Early School Leaving in Europe is a project funded by the Horizon Europe program, Call Inclusiveness in times of change, Research and Innovation Action.


For further information

Read more about SCIREARLY, follow us on Facebook, Linkedin, Twitter e Instagram, and visit the web site https://scirearly.eu/.

Contact Alessia Valenti: alessia.valenti@cesie.org.