New report aims to inspire new government with feel good factor

More ethnic minority school leavers are going into further education and there is a growing ethnic middle class, according to a report drawn up by the government’s social planning unit SCP.

The SCP, which publishes an annual report on the state of the nation, says it deliberately looked for ‘inspiring examples and rich opportunities over a wide range of topics’ this year. It hoped this positive approach would give the new cabinet a different perspective on the future of the Netherlands.
The report focuses in particular on developments among ethnic minorities. The number of students with a non-western background has more than doubled over the past 10 years to some 12%. And 27% of school leavers of Moroccan origin now go to higher education colleges (HBO), compared with 11% in 1995. The report also points out that around 90 schools offer bilingual education, compared with 25 at the turn of the century.
The changing role of farmers, working mothers and church-goers also comes under the SCP spotlight.
The health picture is less rosy: while smoking rates have gone down, only one in four women and one in eight men meet government targets on smoking, exercise and healthy eating, the SCP said.

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