Children born in the Netherlands to immigrant parents are almosttwice as likely to leave school with poor or no qualifications andthree times more likely to be unemployed as the children of parentswho were themselves born in the Netherlands, according to a newOECD study on integration that compares the education levels andlabour market outcomes of young people aged 20 to 29 in 16 OECDcountries.
The study examines the performance of children born in the hostcountry to two immigrant parents compared with the children ofnon-immigrant parents and immigrant children born outside the hostcountry.
Among the findings which are particularly relevant for theNetherlands are that:
–In most European OECD countries, the children of immigrantsare more likely to leave school with poor or no qualifications thanchildren of non-immigrant parents. Children born in the Netherlandsto immigrant parents are almost twice as likely to be low-educatedthan children of non-immigrant parents.
–The children of immigrants are less likely to have jobs than thechildren of non-immigrant parents in most OECD countries. But inthe Netherlands, the gap is nearly double the OECD average: 9 ofout of 10 children of non-immigrant parents had jobs in 2005,compared to only 7 out of 10 children born in the Netherlands toimmigrant parents. Only Belgium has such a gap.
–On average for the OECD, compared to the children ofnon-immigrant parents, children born in the host country toimmigrant parents are twice as likely to be in the group with pooror no qualifications who are neither in employment nor ineducation. In Netherlands, the ratio is about three times higher,for both men and women.
–Comparing children born in the Netherlands to immigrant parentsand children of non-immigrant parents by gender and educationlevel, the low-educated sons of immigrants have the mostdifficulties in the labour market, compared to the sons ofnon-immigrant parents. Only slightly more than 5 out of 10 of theformer are in employment, compared with 8 out of 10 for thelow-educated sons of non-immigrant parents.
–Children of immigrants are well integrated into the publicadministration in the Netherlands, a fact which seems to be linkedwith longstanding policy efforts in this domain. This is animportant achievement, since employment in the publicadministration has many positive effects, serving both as a rolemodel for the private sector and increasing the visibility ofimmigrants and their children in daily life.
*The study “Children of Immigrants in the Labour Markets of EUand OECD countries: An Overview” is available as an OECD workingpaper through the following link: