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Table E.1.09. Progression within educational phases as reported in International Review of Curriculum and Assessment Frameworks Internet Archive (INCA), by type of education and country: 2010

Country Primary Lower secondary
England open open
Ireland open open
Northern Ireland open open
Scotland open open
Wales open open
France1 perf perf
Germany perf perf
Hungary perf perf
Italy2 perf perf
Netherlands perf perf
Spain3 perf perf
Sweden4 open perf
Switzerland perf perf
Australia open open
Canada open open/perf
Japan open open
Korea open open
New Zealand open open
Singapore5 open perf
South Africa6 perf perf
USA open/perf open/perf
1 Although automatic promotion is becoming the norm.
2 Progression within primary education is generally open although there are some very rare exceptions.
3 Although most students generally progress automatically from one school year to the next, children who do not meet the objectives for a given year do not automatically progress to the next year. Instead, they receive additional support to achieve the objectives before being allowed to move on. Generally, however, no child is held back for more than one year.
4 Students normally progress to a higher class. However, after consulting a child’s parent, the head teacher may decide not to move a student up (or to transfer a child earlier than would be the norm).
5 Generally open in primary education, although some students may be asked to repeat the final year of primary education.
6 Students in South Africa are expected to meet expected levels of performance to progress from one Grade to the next. To reduce the number of students repeating, a new assessment policy, moving the emphasis from year-end exams to continuous performance appraisals has been introduced. This provides struggling students with greater assistance. It is intended that students should not spend more than four years in each phase and should, as a rule, progress with their age group.
NOTE: This table indicates whether students automatically move to the next class (open) or whether this is subject to their achieving certain minimum standards (perf). In most countries where performance governs progression, the decision is made by all the teachers of the relevant class/year group and includes consultation with parents. For those countries with devolved structures (Australia, Canada, Germany, South Africa, Switzerland, and the USA) it is not always possible to provide ‘national’ data. Readers should therefore recognize that the data may refer to specific states or provinces, as examples, and cannot necessarily be taken to reflect a national position.
SOURCE: O'Donnell, S., Sargent, C., Byrne, A., and White, E. (2010). International Review of Curriculum and Assessment Frameworks Internet Archive Comparative Tables. Table 6.4. International Review of Curriculum and Assessment Frameworks Internet Archive.