In this article, the phrase premature school leavers refers to pupils who leave school without a basic qualification and are under the age of 23. Data are based upon direct throughflow and outflow data of two successive school years within the sector government-funded education. Pupils who leave school for a year and subsequently return are considered as school drop-outs, if they lack a basic qualification. Pupils have attained a basic qualification for the labour market, if the have graduated from higher general secondary education or pre-university education or basic vocational education (mbo level2).
This article is not intended to provide absolute total numbers of premature school leavers in the Netherlands. It is based on provisional figures over 2006/’07 and includes only people included in the municipal population registers (GBA). More information on the employed method can be found in the explanatory notes of StatLine, the database of Statistics Netherlands