• Sweden edition
 
Sweden boosts support to immigrant students

Sweden boosts support to immigrant students

Published: 12 Sep 2012 13:10 GMT+02:00
Updated: 12 Sep 2012 13:10 GMT+02:00

The new funds, scheduled to be spent between 2013 and 2016, are part of the government's efforts to address sinking academic performance of foreign-born children who arrive in Sweden after the age when primary school begins – around 7-years-old.

"The results are too low and it takes too long before immigrant students reach a sufficiently high level of knowledge," Minister for Education Jan Björklund told the TT news agency in unveiling the spending proposal on Wednesday.

Since 2000, the percentage of non-European immigrant children with marks high enough for them to pursue secondary education has dropped from just over 60 percent to just over 40 percent, according to figures from Statistics Sweden (Statistiska centralbyrån, SCB) cited by the government.

By comparison, around 90 percent of Swedish-born pupils qualify to start secondary education programmes.

The money will be used to expand lesson times for newly immigrated students in grades 5 through 9, the final year of compulsory education in Sweden.

Some of the funds will also be used to further train teachers and principals to improve their ability to educate students with Swedish as a second language.

Around 150 million kronor will also be spend on improving Swedish language classes for immigrants in the form of grants to institutions that would allow them to offer additional classroom time or help students more easily combine the course with a job or other training programmes.

"There is a long road ahead, but this amount to a few steps in the right direction," said Björklund.

According to the minister, immigrant students' falling academic performance is in part attributable to an influx of students from Somalia and Afghanistan, both countries with education systems which have been left in tatters due to years of war.

In addition, said Björklund, immigrant children arriving in Sweden are generally older today than they were previously, meaning they enter Swedish education system at a later age and have a harder time adjusting.

Some of the new funds will also be spent on surveying the education levels of newly arrived immigrant children in order to ensure they get the support they need.

The government also plans to use some of the money to increase awareness of school choice in Sweden by providing more information in languages other than Swedish.

Also under consideration is a plan that would require immigrant students who enter the Swedish school system late to stay in school longer.

"We think people should have nine years of compulsory education. If someone comes here as an 11- or 12-year-old, in reality you only get four years in school," Björklund told reported, according to the Aftonbladet newspaper.

"Therefore, extending compulsory school attendance until someone is 17 or 18 is something we're investigating now."

TT/The Local/dl

Follow The Local on Twitter

Your comments about this article

14:48 September 12, 2012 by Abe L
Considering other news the focus should be on creating and finding jobs for the existing unemployed workforce rather then extending it?
20:30 September 12, 2012 by johan rebel
Howabout first ensuring that real Swedes get a proper education? It would admitttedly help if the Sweidsh kids tried a bit harder too.
21:14 September 12, 2012 by Migga
It doesn`t matter how much money one spends if the one who should learn doesn`t want to.
21:47 September 12, 2012 by matona1
johan rebel ,who are reall swede?johan rebel please for once support your leaders ideas they know more than you do,and for your info swede is swede nothing like real swede
06:39 September 13, 2012 by frenchviking
I think it is good to do something about it...

Actually, if we are to take in people from war ravaged areas, we might as well do it properly and give them a chance as well as make sure (not give them a chance not to) that they will integrate into society and get jobs... otherwise they will always be dependent on public money, always be apart, never integrate...

Taking in refugees to help them is more than just open the border and park them into a building outside of town... there is a whole lot of work to integrate them so they can become part of the local life, culture and become productive as well rather than a long term burden on public finances.

I think it is actually very good that this government realises that and starts doing something about it.

Maybe also this will open people's eyes that you cannot take in an infinite number of people with such background with a finite amount of resources.

My point is, if we take people in, let's do it right. So let's limit the number of refugees we take in but invest more "long term" into them. So they integrate and become productive.

It is good to help, but if ry to help everyone you just get the system to collapse and you do not help anyone...
07:50 September 13, 2012 by RobinHood
I am shocked. The Local has posted a picture above of a lady who is clearly a racial stereotype of an African woman. This is outrageous racism, and we deserve an apology.
10:28 September 13, 2012 by ingvar
If Swedish government invested in stimulating birth rate in Swedish families as much money as it invests now in stimulating immigration from the undeveloped regions, it could reach it's goal sooner and with less troubles for the native population.
Today's headlines
National
Chainsaw man destroys house in family feud
The man used a chainsaw to destroy most of the Lidköping home. Photo: Shutterstock

Chainsaw man destroys house in family feud

A man in central Sweden has gone on a rampage with a chainsaw after a family housing dispute took an unexpected turn. READ  

National
Man frames beggar with stolen tablet computer
The beggar was detained for almost 24 hours after the accusation. Photo: TT

Man frames beggar with stolen tablet computer

A man in southern Sweden has landed in hot water after he stole a tablet computer, gave it to a beggar, then reported her to the police. READ  

Stockholm 'sub hunt'
Sweden ready to use force to surface sub
The Swedish Armed Forces have sent out 200 troops. Photo: TT

Sweden ready to use force to surface sub

UPDATED: Sweden's military has announced that if it finds a suspect foreign vessel in the Stockholm archipelago, it is prepared to force it to the surface "with weapons if necessary". READ  

Stockholm 'sub hunt'
Sub hunt: 'There is something out there'
Former navy officer Bosse Linden in Vaxholm. Photo: Maddy Savage

Sub hunt: 'There is something out there'

Stockholm's archipelago is the focus of the biggest military operation in Sweden since the Cold War. The Local is in the region's capital, Vaxholm, to see what residents make of the drama. READ  

Presented by CurrencyFair
CurrencyFair: Why it pays when making overseas transfers
CurrencyFair co-founder Brett Meyers

CurrencyFair: Why it pays when making overseas transfers

Tired of losing money when you send cash back home? Join other expats in Sweden who avoid bank fees and hidden charges by sending money internationally with CurrencyFair, an online marketplace where secure transactions are faster and cheaper. READ  

European Union
Extremist saves Sweden Democrats' EU group
Sweden Democrat leader Jimmie Åkesson. Photo: TT

Extremist saves Sweden Democrats' EU group

The EU group that bound several Eurosceptic parties including the Sweden Democrats has been saved by an MEP from a far-right Polish group, just a week after it appeared to have crumbled, according to a UK press report. READ  

Stockholm 'submarine' hunt
Timeline: Mystery 'submarine' in Stockholm
Sweden's Armed Forces are out in force after reports of a foreign vessel in the Stockholm archipelago. Photo: TT

Timeline: Mystery 'submarine' in Stockholm

The world has had its periscope on Sweden since the Swedish military launched an extensive hunt for what is rumoured to be a damaged Russian submarine in the Stockholm archipelago. Here is the timeline of events so far. READ  

Business & Money
Profit leap for Swedbank
A branch of Swedbank in Malmö. Photo. TT

Profit leap for Swedbank

Swedbank has seen its profits rise higher than expected. READ  

New coalition
Sick pay U-turn from Sweden's new coalition
Stefan Löfven has changed his strategy on sick pay. Photo: TT

Sick pay U-turn from Sweden's new coalition

Small businesses won't face rising sick pay costs, following a policy reversal from Sweden's new coalition government. READ  

Stockholm 'submarine' hunt
Vessel hunt continues at 'full strength'
Minehunter HMS Koster takes part in the search in the Stockholm archipelago on Sunday. Photo: Marko Säävälä/TT

Vessel hunt continues at 'full strength'

The search for a suspected foreign vessel in the Stockholm archipelago continues with "full strength" on Tuesday morning, according to Sweden's armed forces. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Gallery
Property of the week: Malmö
Gallery
PHOTOS: 'Foreign activity' in Swedish waters
National
Sweden deploys troops over underwater threat
Gallery
People-watching: October 19th
TT
Society
QUIZ: How good is your Swedish?
Blog updates

19 October

Getting it (Blogweiser) »

"Follow Joel Sherwood on FB Few watch baseball in Sweden. This is excellent when your team loses..." READ »

 

17 October

Editor’s Blog, Oct 17th (The Local Sweden) »

"Hi readers, Here’s the whole week of news in just 60 seconds. The most-read story was about a..." READ »

 
 
 
Business & Money
Get your own office in Gothenburg or Stockholm - free for a day
National
A Touch of Scandinavia: Reindeer in the kitchen
Lifestyle
What's on in Sweden: October 17th - 24th
Society
The nudity... and nine other things expat men notice in Sweden
Gallery
People-watching: October 15th
Gallery
Your views: Should outdoor smoking be banned in Sweden?
Business & Money
Sweden has 'large hole' in finances
Sponsored Article
Introducing... Finding a job in Stockholm
Society
Monster salmon caught in northern Sweden
Gallery
Property of the week: Lorensberg
National
Scandinavia's child bride
National
Ebola crisis: How is Sweden preparing?
Lifestyle
Sweden's The Bridge to become 'more Danish'
Business & Money
How Sweden is becoming a cashless society
Gallery
Stockholm Burlesque Festival 2014
National
How a little red horse became a symbol for Sweden
Gallery
People-watching: October 12th
Business & Money
The hottest start-ups from southern Sweden
National
What's on in Sweden: October 10th - 17th
National
Stockholm is 'best' region for well-being
Gallery
People-watching: October 8th
National
Five facts to know about Patrick Modiano
Society
My Swedish Career: A French fashionista in Sweden
Society
Swede's anti-bully Facebook tale goes viral
Society
Have you seen Sweden's viral subway cancer campaign?
National
Isis: Swedes linked to Turkish prisoner swap
National
Should Swedes be banned from buying sex abroad?
Gallery
Fredrik Reinfeldt's leaving presents
National
Five Swedish TV shows you shouldn't miss
Gallery
A tool belt, a casserole, and a book. Fredrik Reinfeldt's parliament gifts
TT
Lifestyle
Top five winter festivals in Sweden
TT
National
Sami reindeer herders win mine reprieve
Gallery
Property of the Week: Gamla Enskede
Sponsored Article
How to catch the first lobster of the year
Politics
Ten new minister faces you should know
Tech
First womb transplant baby in world born in Sweden
Gallery
People-watching: October 5th
National
What's on in Sweden
National
Sweden rethinks Afghan translators' protection
Society
Interview with Geena Davis: 'I want to be in a Swedish movie'
Team SCA
Sponsored Article
All-female SCA team takes off on Volvo Ocean Race
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

1,008
jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
www.swedishdowntown.com
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at:
http://psdmedia.se
If you want to drink, that’s your business.
If you want to stop, we can help.

Learn more about English-language Alcoholics Anonymous in Sweden. No dues. No fees. Confidentiality assured.
AA-EUROPE.ORG/SWEDEN