Denmark has a well-developed public school system with more than 582,658 students distributed at around 1,630 public schools (including special schools). The often lively and heated debate surrounding the Danish public school involves several ongoing and often interrelated themes. Ramboll has through numerous evaluations and studies informed these debates.
Evaluation of Danish schools
One major theme in the Danish school debate is that of evaluation and accountability. The 2004 OECD review identified the lack of an evaluation culture as one of the main weaknesses in the Danish school system. Ramboll's management consultancy has in preparation for the '2010 OECD review on Evaluation and Assessment Frameworks for Improving School Outcomes' drafted the Danish 'Country Background Report', presenting an up-to-date overview of the evaluation landscape in the Danish public school system. The background report, which is based on existing desk research of existing documentation, was prepared for the 'Agency for the Evaluation and Quality of Primary and Lower Secondary Education' (the School Agency) in the summer of 2010.
Goal-attainment evaluation of the national advising reform
Another major theme in the area of education revolves around the academic advising services and structures in the Danish school system. The government objective of 95 % of Danish youth completing an upper-secondary degree in the year 2015 is in many ways dependent on a coherent advising system that effectively bridges the gap between the different levels and transitions in the school system. In the spring of 2009, as just one example of our work, Ramboll designed and implemented a goal-attainment evaluation of the national advising reform of 2008 on behalf of the Danish Ministry of Education.
The aim of the evaluation was to document the implementation and early results of the initiatives comprising the reform. The conclusions and recommendations of the evaluation were also to inform the initiatives in the recently introduced Youth Act II. The evaluation involved a combination of qualitative and quantitative data collection in the form of a nation-wide survey among advisors and several case studies on selected schools.