The formal education comprises four main parts:
preschool, school, higher education and adult education. The
conditions described below apply to 2009.
Preschool is a non-compulsory form of care and
educational activity for children under school age. Since
October 1, 2008, the Swedish School Inspectorate has been
the supervisory authority for preschool as well as for other
preschool activities and school child care. A special
curriculum now applies to preschool, which is now part of
and constitutes the first step in society's overall
educational system for children and youth.
The municipality is now obliged to set up preschool
classes, which are a replacement for the preschool's former
general part-time preschool for 6-year-olds. The preschool
class is, from the parents' point of view, a voluntary
school form, but is also part of the school with the same
curriculum as the compulsory compulsory school. See TOPSCHOOLSINTHEUSA for TOEFL, ACT, SAT testing locations and high school codes in Sweden.
The school consists of a 9-year compulsory
compulsory school for the age of 7-16 years and a 3-year
municipal or county council high school. Both are free of
charge. The compulsory school comprises nine grades
and offers an essentially common course of study for all
pupils. Each school determines, within the framework of the
overall goals set in the curriculum, how teaching time
should be allocated. English is usually introduced during
the first few years. Each school with tuition in later years
shall, as a language choice, offer at least two of the
languages French, Spanish and German. Within the framework
of the total teaching time, there is a space for the
student's choice of studies in order to broaden or deepen
the student's knowledge. Upper secondary schoolis a
voluntary school form that provides both college preparation
and vocational preparation education. Lines and special
courses have gradually been replaced by 18 national programs
as well as introductory programs.
For higher education, the university responds in
principle with the state as principal. It is divided into
basic education with general and professional degrees as
well as postgraduate education with a doctorate as the final
goal. The main principle is that all higher education in one
place must be brought together to the university's
university or university. However, there are several
exceptions, especially in Stockholm, where among other
things. The Technical University, Karolinska Institutet,
Teachers College and Södertörn University are independent
units. This also applies to Chalmers University of
Technology in Gothenburg and Sweden's Agricultural
University, located in Uppsala but with education in other
places. The same applies to the medical education in Malmö,
which belongs to Lund University.
Adult education is a collective name for several
forms of education for adults (persons over the age of 18).
More limited is meant to increase competence for further
studies or professional life. One form of adult education is
municipal adult education (komvux), which received a
unified organization in 1968, and which should primarily
provide primary or secondary school skills. Another form is
labor market education (AMU), which is administered by
the Swedish Employment Service and which in turn buys
education of, for example. educational companies, colleges
or municipalities. Another form is the higher education,
which has attracted more and more adults (older than 25)
since the 1970s. (See also continuing education.)
Adult education also means folk education that
has a long tradition in the Nordic countries and a broad
anchoring in folk high schools and in study associations'
study circles. The public colleges and study
associationsis run by organizations with non-profit,
religious or union backgrounds. The first folk high schools
were established as early as 1864 in Sweden, then as a
degree-free boarding school, mainly for bond sons in
preparation for their political and social life and for
their working lives. Today (2016), there are 154 public
colleges, most with boarding schools, where full-year and
short courses in general and artistic subjects are given.
Since the 1970s, some folk high school courses give
admission to higher education. Another form of popular
education is the study circle that was developed in the
early 1900s within the popular movements and is now an
established form of study with several million adult
participants. See also Folkuniversitetet.
The communalization of the school
When the primary school was introduced in 1842, the
responsibility for the school was shared between the state
and the municipalities. The state was responsible for school
laws, curricula, grading systems, teacher resources, teacher
education and for further training of school leaders and
teachers. The municipalities were responsible for premises,
teaching materials and school transfers.
Critics felt that the state school system was inflexible,
difficult to understand and bureaucratic with limited
opportunities for school staff to influence organization and
teaching. In 1991, some of the state's tasks were
transferred to the country's municipalities in the
municipalization of the school. The municipalities were
given increased responsibility for the implementation of the
Riksdag's and the Government's decisions. The municipalities
were also given responsibility for the school's organization
and distribution of resources as well as for the continuing
education of the teachers.
The system in which the state county school boards
distributed the school's resources by class and academic
year was replaced with a specially determined state grant to
the school in the municipalities. Prior to the
municipalization, school leaders and teachers were employed
in the municipalities but had state-regulated services and
agreements. As a result of the municipalization, the
responsibility for the agreements that regulated the pay and
employment conditions was transferred to the Swedish
Municipalities and the County Council.
The state's credit rating provisions for service
appointments were replaced with a general letter stating
that the municipalities were obliged to use teachers trained
for the teaching they are to conduct.
At the same time, the state school administration
changed. The School Supervisory Authority was closed down
and replaced with the National Agency for Education.
Organizational change was part of decentralization. As the
municipalities were given increased responsibility for the
school, the tasks of the state school authority changed to
work more with monitoring and evaluation of the
municipalities. The state went from rule control to a
greater degree of goal control and then all the tasks that
had previously been laid on the School Board no longer
needed to be performed.
In 1992, the free choice of school, the system of
independent schools, the system of school money and the
introduction of new forms of principals were allowed to be
responsible for the operation of primary and secondary
schools. This made it possible for people other than
municipalities to run schools.
The reforms were carried out by the then bourgeois
government consisting of the Moderates, the Center Party,
the People's Party and the Christian Democrats. The
moderates led the government with Carl Bildt as prime
minister and were thus responsible for school issues. Per
Unckel was Minister of Education and Beatrice Ask was
Minister of School. The Environment Party also advocated
free school reforms, but without sitting in Parliament.
From 1990, it would have been possible to choose another
municipal school within the same municipality, provided it
had a different educational orientation or subject profile.
That opportunity was extended in 1992 to schools in other
municipalities as well as independent schools. The
requirement that the school should have a different profile
was removed at the same time.
Until the 1990s, there were requirements that independent
schools could only be approved if they had a special
education or activity that was not in the municipal schools.
Examples of such could be schools with waldorf or montessori
pedagogy. These would have something to add to the general
school system. With the free school reform, that requirement
was removed and replaced with a more generally held
formulation in the school law. It was enough to have an
activity that was designed much like the municipal schools
in order for an independent school to be approved.
As of the 2011 School Act, as far as possible, there are
similar provisions for municipal and independent schools. It
is the state, through the School Inspectorate, that approves
new independent schools.
An approved independent school receives financial
compensation from the municipality under the school
allowance system. The grant consists of a basic amount per
pupil, which is calculated on the municipality's cost of
tuition (teacher salaries), educational resources, student
health, meals, administration, local costs and VAT. In
addition to the basic amounts, an additional amount can be
paid based on individual assessment for reimbursement to
assistant assistance, adaptation of premises or other
extraordinary support measures for a student.
In addition to foundations and non-profit associations
that previously operated independent schools, in 1992 there
were also limited companies, economic associations, trading
companies and individual companies as principals.
Initially, the independent schools were not covered by
the eligibility provisions in the School Act. Thus, they
were not required to hire trained teachers. From 2003, the
regulations were changed and the same rules became the same
for all the principals.
The targeted state grant to the school that was decided
by the municipalization was removed in 1993. Thereafter, the
school's state resources are included in the general state
grant that the municipalities can freely dispose of.
Since the decisions on the independent schools were
taken, there has been a rapid growth of the free school
sector. In 1992, some single percent of pupils in compulsory
school attended an independent school. In 2015, the
proportion had grown to almost 15 percent. In 2015, the
independent upper secondary schools had about 26 percent of
the students. The independent schools are primarily located
in the metropolitan regions, in the larger cities and in
university and college places.
In the early 1990s, it was the educational alternatives,
with foundations and non-profit associations as principals,
that grew in number. But after a couple of years, the
limited companies took over and in 2013, 65 percent of the
students went to independent elementary schools in a school
where a limited company was the principal. In 2013, 88
percent of the students in the independent upper secondary
schools attended a school run by a public limited company.
AcadeMedia AB is the largest private education group in
Sweden today and comprises about 500 preschools, primary and
secondary schools. The company was listed on the stock
exchange in 2001 and was acquired the same year by venture
capital company EQT Partners AB.