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Report shows that Malta’s students top Europe league

Malta has the highest percentage of students who speak a second language within the EU.

The Education and Training Monitor 2012, issued by the European Commission, shows that the proportion of students familiar with a “first foreign language” is highest – 82 per cent – in Malta and Sweden, where English is a second language.

The lowest rates were marked in France, where 14 per cent speak English, and England, where French is a second language for nine per cent of students. The report, which looked at the education landscape, also found that Malta suffered a considerable drop in the rate of early school leavers that stood at 24.5 per cent last year, the Education Ministry said.

The extensive report shows that Malta had a high employment rate for early school leavers and that the country’s expenditure on education stood at 5.5 per cent of the gross domestic product, compared to the EU average of 5.4 per cent.

In a statement, Labour Party education spokesman Evarist Bartolo said that despite the decrease in early school leavers, Malta still had one of the highest rates of early school leavers in the EU. He said the Government was more interested in the number of students who graduated and did not seem concerned about the high number of young people falling behind.

The Malta College for Arts, Science and Technology recently pointed out that 30 per cent of students gave up on the subject they had originally chosen within the first two years, he noted.

The Education Ministry reacted, saying that the Labour Party was continuing to refuse to recognise Malta’s success in the educational sector.

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