Lifelong Learning Programme

This project has been funded with support from the European Commission.
This material reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein

Lifelong Learning Project - School Inclusion - Preventing Early School Leaving

Database delle pubblicazioni


Contrastare la dispersione scolastica attraverso le politiche locali: dalla ricerca all'azione di rete


Maddalena Colombo


Il Mulino


Bologna, July 2011


Magazine article




The present article deals with the theme of Early school leaving (Esl) of “Sistema Italia”, reflecting upon the effectiveness of the national politics provided to prevent and tackle this phenomenon. Following the guidelines prescribed by the new “EU Lisbon strategy 2020”, that imperatively charges the European State Members of reducing the early school leavers national rate, the author writes about the strength and the weaknesses of the Italian school. Italy, in comparison with other European nations, is still under the averages although recent achievements have been made. The enlargement of the compulsory school age (from 14 to 16 years old) reached its goals, but it has not prevent the society from the risk of an increase in the drop outs. Furthermore, the author focuses on the disadvantaged social and economic background, especially in the South-regions of the peninsula, so as the discrimination suffered by the second-generation of immigrants as internal factors responsible for the problem of the early school leaving, as it was traditionally interpreted. In addition, she presents a new kind of drop outs, that is the younger male workers with law qualified jobs, working in the most developed regions of Italy. The article ends with a wish by the author directly addressed to all the European members and to Italy in particular, that, nowadays, are still facing this problem: it is necessary to follow the instruction coming from the European Union; at the same time each State may constantly improve and work at the quality of its human capital so that it won’t be lost. This phenomenon has both nationals and regional roots, so it’s solution requires a multi-level co-ordination that should involve institutional actors (central governments and local institutions), but also social actors (teachers, that are directly linked to the school environment) and families (parents and sons together).


The article deals with a delicate and complex issue, whose basis are to be found in the weaknesses of the Italian social and educational system. The author properly compared the Italian situation with the important improvements made by the other European states and he reminded us of the fundamental objectives contained in the 2020 Lisbon Strategy: each EU member facing the problem of early school leaving has to carry on its responsibilities and duties in monitoring and improving its national situation. The author took into consideration all the aspects of the phenomenon, from the general vision to the specific aspects of the Italian system. The result is an interesting and clear examination of the reasons for the scholastic drop-out and it underlines the problems of a well-developed society in recognizing the vital importance of an essential instrument of growth, the education. The solution provided by the article, the opening of a co-ordination and collaboration method, can be seen as the right answer for the decreasing in the drop-outs. The wish for a more serious cooperation between the States in searching a way out from this problem, both at national and local level, is absolutely sharable.


Sara Ciabattini




Project Assistant

Login Area

15 November 2012

Stay@School at the Future of Education Conference

The Stay@School projet will be presented at the third edition of the “Future of Education” international conference, held in Florence, Italy, on 13 - 14 June 2013. Over 250 participants from all over the world will attend the conference. The conference participants belong to the sectors of higher education, school education, vocational education and training as well as adult education, therefore representing all of the target groups of the Stay@School project.

School Inclusion - Copyright 2008 - This project has been funded with support from the European Commission

Valid XHTML 1.1Valid CSS!  Comunicazione grafica: - Programmazione & Web Marketing: - Hosting by: Connectis s.r.l.
Materiale fotografico: © Yuri Arcurs |