Education exceeded one million jobs for the first time in September and recorded its biggest rise after the summer since 2015

Last September marked a milestone in the education sector. Employment, which always tends to grow due to the ‘back to school’ after the summer, exceeded one million Social Security affiliates for the first time and recorded its second largest increase in September in history, since 2015. The drop in school dropout , the increase in training throughout life and the promotion of Vocational Training and Early Childhood Education are some of the engines that have led to this increase.

As reflected in the unemployment data for this September, employment growth has been generalized since February 2020 , although the increase has been especially intense in activities such as IT and Telecommunications (17.7%), Education (13.1%) and Professional, Scientific and Technical Activities (9.5%).

September is always a month of increased hiring in the education sector. Summer is over and schools are calling on professionals to open their schools again. But this ‘back to school’ has been especially strong in terms of employment, with education being one of the drivers of this increase in enrollment in the last month. 

Specifically, from August 2022 to September of the same year,  63,649 new jobs were created, exceeding the million hired in the sector for the first time. Moreover, it has been the second best increase since the current classification of economic activities exists (CNAE 2009). The only year in which the occupation after the summer rose so much was in 2015 (63,729 more), but even so the number of affiliates at that time (736,575) was far from what was registered this September.

Sources from the Ministry of Education attribute this significant increase to several factors. In the first place, to the usual hiring of personnel in the month of September. Then, to the growth of Vocational Training (FP) places after the boost given by the new Government law and also to the strengthening of the first cycle of Early Childhood Education (0-3 years).

“Although not at the same level, the teacher reinforcements that were launched with the pandemic also have an influence , since they are still maintained in many autonomous communities,” the same sources affect. 

Less school dropout and more training 

But at this juncture, other variables that have favored this increase must also be taken into account. demographics, for example. In recent years there has been a significant reduction in school dropout. Since 2011, this rate has decreased 13 points, from 26.3% to 13.3%. 

“Employment depends a lot on demand,” says Florentino Felgueroso, a researcher associated with Fedea, at 20minutes . And the demand for education has grown considerably since the economic crisis of 2008. Not only because of the drop in school dropouts, caused in part by young people who remained in the education system as they could not find outlets in sectors that had been key until then and they did not require training, like construction. There is another very relevant cause that is the coronavirus pandemic. ” There was an increase in educational demand beyond young people, and it has increased a lot both among the unemployed and among the employed”, explains the researcher.

According to the OECD report ‘Education at a Glance 2022’,  48.7% of young people between 25 and 34 years old had a higher education degree in 2021, 8.4 points more than in 2011 and almost 15 points more than in 2000 (34%). In addition, explains Felgueroso, with the health crisis, training in new technologies for teleworking was greatly promoted. 

That is also where the bet that the Government has made for FP through its new law comes into play. Only in this course, compared to the previous one, there was an increase of 5.6% in enrollment in this educational path (more than one million students in total). In fact,  in the last three years, Education has created 210,000 new Vocational Training places, 10,000 more than it expected to create in a four-year period.

Promotion of Early Childhood Education

It also highlights the boost that Early Childhood Education has experienced, especially the first cycle, whose number of students once again exceeded 400,000 this year after the drop in 2020 . This is partly due to the fact that in November 2021, the Executive approved an investment of more than 670 million euros (to be distributed until 2024) for the start-up of 65,000 public places for Early Childhood Education from 0 to 3 years.  

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