The Labor party’s national meeting planned to appeal to students and remove the absence limit in upper secondary. But now the teachers’ organisations are saying no. They use strong words: – I would strongly warn against going back to the situation we were in. The absence limit has led to pupils having a higher attendance at school. It is good for both students and teachers and was absolutely necessary, says Steffen Handal, head of the Education Association to Klassekampen.

These are organisations that are traditionally close to the Labor Party. How is their communication?

Handal also reacts to the process. The Labor Party wants to remove the limit even before the Directorate of Education has finished its evaluation of the scheme, which should be finished before Christmas.

He receives support from the leader of the Norwegian Association of Lecturers, Helle Christin Nyhuus.

The absence limit works on delivering its goal, which was to reduce undocumented absences and truancy, she says.

There was a lot of attention about absenteeism before Erna Solberg got it put into place in 2016, the results could be read immediately.

According to a Fafo evaluation from 2020, this led to the average student in upper secondary education reducing their total absence by approximately 27 percent from before the introduction of the limit.

The criticism from the teachers’ organisations is bad PR for the new deputy leader, Education Minister Tonje Brenna. She insists that there will still be rules for absences. But the decision says otherwise.

“Let there be no doubt: We will still have rules for absences at school. I am concerned that we create clear frameworks and focus on here and now,” writes Minister of Education Tonje Brenna (Ap) in an email to the newspaper.

Ap has once again shot itself in the foot.

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