Farewell to re-sits in compulsory education

Catalonia, which had already moved September re-sits to June, applauds the State's decision

2 min
The Minister of Education and Vocational Training, Pilar Alegría, during a press conference.

MadridThe Spanish government has eliminated re-sits in compulsory education, meaning students will no longer take exams in September for exams they failed in June. The Minister for Education and Vocational Training, Pilar Alegría, explained that the new bill reinforces the government's commitment to "continuous assessment" and a "competency-based curriculum", in line with European standards. The new bill will allow students who have failed up to two subjects to move into the next year if the teachers believe it is appropriate.

The idea, then, is that there will be a single evaluation at the end of the year and the centre will decide which students pass and which should stay down. Spain is currently one of the European countries with the highest rate of students staying down a year. Up to 30% of 15-year-olds have stayed down a year at least once. The measure aims precisely to reduce this number. "With the new evaluation system we avoid considering staying down a year as the best option for the student. Reality shows that the 16% school dropout rate we have is fed in part by students who repeat a year and do not move on," the minister explained.

The Generalitat applauds a decision it had already anticipated by advancing re-sits from September to June. The Department of Education claims that the abolition of tests "reinforces the idea that support and assistance must be provided when difficulties are detected during the learning process to overcome them, not at the end of the year". In addition, they say, in line with the ministry, that in a competence-based assessment system it "does not make sense" to pass a subject with a single exam when the level has not been attained during the year. Once the decree is approved, the Generalitat will proceed to the immediate elimination of tests.

On the other hand, the PP has already shown its categorical opposition to the measure. "We are against the suppression of re-sits because we are in favor of the culture of effort and offering a second chance," said the PP spokeswoman in the Spanish Parliament, Cuca Gamarra.

Nursery schools

On the other hand, Alegria has also announced the approval of a €670m fund to be distributed to regions so they create 65,382 new places in nursery schools for children under three by September 2024. "It is a measure with a strong social impact that facilitates balancing work and child rearing, especially for women," Alegría explained.