Schools’ shortcomings not remedied: agency

Schools' shortcomings not remedied: agency
Despite glaring reports from the National School Board (Skolverket) and the Schools Inspectorate (Skolinspektionen) over the past several years, many of Sweden’s municipalities have failed to address the complaints, reveals an investigation by Sveriges Radio (SR).

The in-depth inquiry, carried out by the radio’s Kaliber program, revealed that of the 70 municipalities listed with major flaws and reviewed by the Schools Inspectorate last year, almost half, 44 percent, had failed to correct problems that had been identified several years ago by the School Board.

“When we return to a few of the municipalities that received sharp criticism from the Schools Inspectorate four to five years ago, we see that nothing has happened. It has not improved, it has actually gotten even worse,” Ann-Marie Begles, director of Schools Inspectorate, told SR.

Deficiencies included, amongst others, municipalities’ poor monitoring of student performance, reported SR.

For example, the Schools Inspectorate last year reviewed the municipality of Örnsköldsvik, on the north eastern coast of Sweden, which was slammed for its lack of governance of schools as early as in 2007, and was surprised to discover the quantity of persisting problems.

Local politicians defended the situation, saying that it takes considerable time to reverse downward trends, according to SR.

“In the end, if a municipality does not do as it is obliged to do, according to responsibilities under the law, then we can enforce penalties,” Begles told SR.

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