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Transition to Secondary Schools: Analysis of School Statistical Data From 10 Federal States

This project presents a comprehensive analysis of different data from German school statistics relating to the transition phase from primary school (Grundschule) to the different types of secondary school (Sekundarschule). In most cases, these data are not part of the common standardised indicators of the federal states (Bundesländer) and they are hence not included in annual joint publications of the statistical offices of the states and the Federal Statistical Office.

Project description

The data that are analyzed in this project are derived from regular special surveys conducted by the statistical offices in the Bundesländer, the ministries of education or state agencies for educational quality, which provide the data on request.
Depending on the availability of data in the respective states, the final report includes an analysis of

  • recommendations for secondary school types issued by the primary school teachers;
  • actual transitions to the different types of secondary school;
  • parental choice subsequent to receiving the recommendation for a secondary school type;
  • performance in entrance test in federal states with binding school type recommendations;
  • student achievement at the end of a trial period.

The statistical analysis delivers insight into the state-specific developments of the transition to secondary schools, which have so far not been disclosed by other studies. Some federal states have surveyed the respective data for nearly 40 years, while other federal states have only recently started to collect relevant data.
The interpretation of the data takes federal state specific school legislation pertinent to transition into account. We intend to assess whether school legislative regulations (particularly binding vs non-binding recommendations for transition) bear impact on the recommendations that are issued, and the actual transition ratios.
Parental choice for school transitions is analysed against the background of the school structural reforms that are currently undergone in several federal states.
This project contributes to research on the transition to secondary schools by studying statistical data which according to our first analysis, reveal that decisions in education are not only determined by individual factors, but also by legislation on transition,  the school structure in a given federal state, as well as the options that are available for further education following secondary school.
The following federal states (Bundesländer) are analysed:
Baden-Wuerttemberg, Bavaria, Berlin, Brandenburg, Lower Saxony, Mecklenburg-Western Pommerania, North-Rhine Westphalia, Rhineland-Palatinate, Saxony, Schleswig-Holstein.


Corresponding publication

Project Management

Prof. Dr. em. Horst Weishaupt

Project Details

Completed projects
5/2010 – 3/2011
Department: Educational Governance
last modified Jul 27, 2017