From pre-primary to the secondary school level, international students in Malta have doubled in the last 5 years. There were more than 5,000 international students in Malta by the end of 2016-17. 1 in every 10 students in Malta is now from overseas. The numbers of students from Asia and Africa have trebled in recent years.
The National Statistics Office of Malta conducted a study on all licensed schools in Malta. These schools catered to students between 3 and 16 years of age. The analysis covered 5 scholastics years from 2012 to 2017.
As per the study, there were 57.6% of students in state schools. Church schools had 29.2% and private schools had 13.2%.
The study also noted that the number of Maltese students slightly declined from 52,644 in 2013 to 50,070 in 2017. On the other hand, the number of international students increased from 2,463 in 2013 to 5,401 in 2017.
There has been a rise in the Maltese population due to the influx of immigrant workers. The Maltese population has, of late, exceeded 475,000, as per The Times of Malta.
During the five-year period, the number of Asians in Maltese schools has increased from 242 to 769. The number of African students has increased from 285 to 949. There was no significant change in the number of students from European countries outside the EU. The number of such students was 459 in 2017.
The study also made a comparison between state, church, and private schools. It found that Church schools had the largest number of students in each class.
Church schools had about 25 students per class whereas state schools had 17 in 2017. The number of students per class in private schools varied between 18 and 22.
The study also noted a 26.6% fall in the absenteeism rate during the 5-year period. State schools had the highest number of absentees, almost double the Church and private schools.
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