Evaluation of Educational Leave and Part-time Educational Leave

Executive Summary

The study presents a qualitative and quantitative analysis of the take-up and effects of educational leave and part-time educational leave in the period from 2010 to 2021, showing above all a significant increase in the number of women who went on educational leave following parental leave as of 2019. Older people and people with little formal education have so far been insufficiently addressed by both programmes. Participants are mainly workers who are already well integrated into the labour market and for whom a further improvement in employment opportunities is unlikely from the outset. For people who go on educational leave from active employment, the impact analyses show a slightly negative employment effect through participation. For women who go on educational leave after parental leave, they show a moderately positive long-term effect. Taking up part-time educational leave has hardly any effect. All three instruments lead to less dependent employment and more self-employment and – partly with a time lag – to higher earned income. These results are based on comparisons between participants and control groups of non-participants formed by means of statistical matching. Due to data gaps, unobserved selection of participants could influence the results. In particular, for a considerable part of the participating employed active workers, it was clear from the outset that their employment would end after the educational leave. Compared to a mostly continuously employed comparison group, this can lead to an underestimation of the actual effects. In an online survey, people who took an educational leave or a part-time educational leave between 2019 and 2022 assessed the effects as mostly positive: more than 80 percent considered the training to be relevant for their career advancement and for about two thirds, job satisfaction has increased.