The Netherlands is among those EU countries that will be facing serious teacher shortages in the future. This is according to a new report by the European Commission. Countries that are epected to experience future classroom problems (teacher shortages) are Germany, the United Kingdom, Italy, Austria and Belgium.
The report, entitled ‘Key Data on Education in Europe 2012‘, was presented to EU education ministers who were gathered for talks in Brussels on Friday morning.
The results showed the number of graduates majoring in in education is decreasing at a time when many current teachers are reaching the age of retirement.
Funding for education is stable in most member states, the report concluded, emphasizing that higher education remains the best insurance policy against unemployment.
Teaching not attractive
The report finds that specialised training for teachers, such as mentoring, guidance for assessment and classroom observation, is now more widespread across Europe. But these measures have not been enough to increase the attractiveness of teaching.
The Commission wants to boost the attractiveness and quality of the profession by providing a million teachers with opportunities to gain teaching and training experience abroad as part of its new education programme, Erasmus for All.
“The professional development of teachers is a key factor in ensuring high quality education for our students. That’s why Erasmus for All aims to strengthen the professional development of teaching staff while at the same time modernising education systems,” said EU Education Commissioner Androulla Vassiliou.
According to the report, the percentage of the population with third-level education has risen and that graduates find jobs twice as quickly as people with lower qualifications – five months compared to 9.8 months. But graduates are increasingly over-qualified for their jobs, the report warns, and some professions clearly offer better employment perspectives than others.