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EACEA National Policies Platform:Eurydice
Distribution of responsibilities


8.Adult education and training

8.1Distribution of responsibilities

Last update: 18 March 2024

The Ministry of Education and Research has the regulatory responsibility for all levels of formal education in Norway from kindergarten and upwards. The Norwegian Directorate for Education and Training, which is the executive agency for the Ministry of Education and Research, regulates the content of formal adult education (primary and secondary education). The Directorate has the overall responsibility for supervising the implementation of Acts of parliament and regulations. Moreover, it is responsible for all national statistics concerning kindergarten, primary and secondary education, as well as formal adult education.

The responsibility for immigrant education lies within The Ministry of Education and Research. The Directorate for Higher Education and Skills is responsible for the improvement of the initial training of the Norwegian language and social studies to adult immigrants. The directorate collaborates with other relevant stakeholders under the supervision of this ministry. The Norwegian Labour and Welfare Administration (NAV) is responsible for labour market training for registered job seekers and is acting on behalf of the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs.

The Directorate for Higher Education and Skills is responsible for the development of adult basic skills tools, i.e. Competence Goals, basic skills job profiles, and learning resources based on the curricula in the Knowledge Promotion Reform and the Framework for Basic Skills prepared by the Norwegian Directorate for Education and Training. The directorate is also responsible for the subject curriculum in Norwegian and social sciences for adult immigrants and collaborates with other agencies on initial education for immigrants. Furthermore, the directorate administers grants for educational organizations and distance education institutions, and awards funds for educational development in these organizations. The County Governor of Hordaland holds the position as the national executive agency for education and training of persons that are under the supervision of the correctional services. The County Governor is responsible for national administration, cooperation within the sector, and for the distribution of funds.

The county authorities have the responsibility of adult education, including basic skills, at the upper secondary level.

Academic and administrative responsibility for education in prisons lies with the county councils. Practical responsibility for providing teaching lies with the local upper-secondary schools.

The municipalities have the responsibility for adult education, including basic skills and immigrant education, at the elementary and lower secondary level, and Norwegian language and social studies tuition to newly arrived immigrants. The municipality where the refugee/immigrant settles down has the obligation to provide language tuition within three months after settlement.