Are track recommendations dependent on schools and school boards? A study of trends in the level or track recommendations, number of double recommendations and reconsiderations in Dutch urban and rural areas

Anneke Timmermans*, Monique A. Dijks, Matthijs J. Warrens

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

19 Downloads (Pure)


Background: Track recommendations provided to students in the final grade of primary education are leading in the allocation to specific school tracks in secondary education in the Netherlands. In case the results of a standardized test indicate that students are able to go to a higher track level, primary schools are required to reconsider and potentially adjust the track recommendation to a higher level.

Aim: The current research aimed to 1) investigate trends in the level of track
recommendations, double track recommendations and reconsiderations over the years 2014-2015 to 2018-2019, 2) explore the variation in (trends of) track recommendations between Dutch primary schools and their school boards, and 3) assess the association between track recommendations and the school level variables degree of urbanization and type of primary education.

Method: We used multilevel growth curve modelling for continuous and count data based on publicly available school level population data regarding track recommendations and school leavers tests from 2014-2015 to 2018-2019.

Results: The number of double track recommendations has increased over the cohorts, with a slightly decreasing gap between schools in rural and urban areas. The number of reconsiderations first decreased, and then increased. The differences in reconsiderations between rural and urban areas are increasing over time. An initial trend towards higher average recommendations stabilizing in the later cohorts appeared with no clear pattern for degree of urbanization.
Original languageEnglish
JournalBritish Educational Research Journal
Publication statusSubmitted - Feb-2023

Cite this