New Education Act
The Norwegian Government has submitted a proposal for a new Education Act to the Norwegian Parliament (Storting). The new Education Act and new regulations are planned to come into force from August 2024
Among the proposals for changed legislation are:
- A right to upper secondary education until completion. This means that if a student fails one or more subjects or interrupts the education before finishing, the student has a right to upper secondary education until completion. Today the main statutory right is three years of upper secondary education.
- A right to choose upper secondary education as many times as a student wants until the deadline for application the year the student turns 19. Today, it is only possible to change upper secondary education one time.
- To regulate in the Act the fact that schools have to follow up students who are absent. The duty implies to follow up absence and prevent that absence becomes too high for an individual student. Also, today the schools have to follow up students who are absent, but this is not mentioned explicitly in the Act.
- To regulate in the Act the County Authority’s duty to provide a safe and good transition from primary and lower secondary to upper secondary education. Today the legislation covers only transition from kindergarten to primary education.
- To regulate in the Act the fact that the Country Authority has to offer provision for students that lack necessary language skills or academic skills in the transition to upper secondary education, so that they can participate and pass upper secondary education.
- To legislate that the County Authority shall make sure that those who have apprenticeships get access to counselling about education and career choices, as well as counselling about social and personal matters.
- To expand the follow-up service’s target group. The service is to follow-up youth until they turn 24 years, and not only until they are 21 years of age, which is what is covered by the legislation today. This means that more youth who are not in education nor in work will be helped into competence promoting measures that can qualify them for working life.
- To regulate in the Act that the students’ best interest is the basic consideration in actions and decisions concerning students.
- To regulate in the Act the students’ right to participate in all that concerns them according to the Act, and the fact that students are heard and that emphasis is placed on their opinions. The students’ right to self-determination from the age of 15 is clarified in the new Act.
- The rules about adapted education and individual adaptation are clarified. The proposal states that it should be the main rule that teachers should fulfil the competence requirement in the subject being taught. The proposal opens for persons with university or university college education that make them suited to address the needs of the student, can give individually adapted education, even if they are not teachers.
There are no new reforms or policy changes to report on in 2022.
Responses to Covid-19
It has been necessary to adapt the infection control measures to the situation at the local level, both regarding infection and outbreak management. This is done for schools by implementing measures in accordance with the applicable level of the traffic light model.
It is up to the infection control authorities to decide which level the measures are to be applied in accordance with the traffic light model. It is not, however, possible for local downgrades from the national set action level.
Details about the measures can be found in these guides:
- Guide to infection control for kindergartens
- Guide to infection control for school years 1–7
- Guide to infection control for lower and upper secondary schools