European Education Area Progress Report 2021

Education and Training Monitor 2021


1. Key indicators

Figure 1 – Key indicators overview
Bulgaria EU-27
2010 2020 2010 2020
EU-level targets 2030 target
Participation in early childhood education
(from age 3 to starting age of compulsory primary education)
≥ 96% 83.8%13 79.9%19 91.8%13 92.8%19
Low achieving eighth-graders in digital skills < 15% : : : :
Low achieving 15-year-olds in: Reading < 15% 41.0%09,b 47.1%18 19.7%09,b 22.5%18
Maths < 15% 47.1%09 44.4%18 22.7%09 22.9%18
Science < 15% 38.8%09 46.5%18 17.8%09 22.3%18
Early leavers from education and training (age 18-24) < 9% 12.6%b 12.8% 13.8% 9.9%
Exposure of VET graduates to work based learning ≥ 60% : : : :
Tertiary educational attainment (age 25-34) ≥ 45% (2025) 27.5% 33.0% 32.2% 40.5%
Participation of adults in learning (age 25-64) ≥ 47% (2025) : : : :
Other contextual indicators
Education investment Public expedienture on education as a percentage of GDP 3.6% 3.9%19 5.0% 4.7%19
Expenditure on public and private institutions per FTE/student in € PPS ISCED 1-2 €2 03412 €3 09618 €6 07212,d €6 35917,d
ISCED 3-4 €2 10612 €2 85818 €7 36613,d €7 76217,d
ISCED 5-8 €3 81812 €6 57818 €9 67912,d €9 99517,d
Early leavers from education and training (age 18-24) Native 12.7%b 12.8% 12.4% 8.7%
EU-born : :u 26.9% 19.8%
Non EU-born :b : 32.4% 23.2%
Upper secondary level attainment (age 20-24, ISCED 3-8) 85.9%b 85.4% 79.1% 84.3%
Tertiary educational attainment (age 25-34) Native 27.5%b 32.9% 33.4% 41.3%
EU-born :b,u :c 29.3% 40.4%
Non EU-born :b,u :u 23.1% 34.4%

Sources: Eurostat (UOE, LFS, COFOG); OECD (PISA). Further information can be found in Annex I and in Volume 1 ( Notes: The 2018 EU average on PISA reading performance does not include ES; the indicator used (ECE) refers to early-childhood education and care programmes which are considered by the International Standard Classification of Education (ISCED) to be ‘educational’ and therefore constitute the first level of education in education and training systems – ISCED level 0; FTE = full-time equivalent; b = break in time series, c = confidential, d = definition differs, u = low reliability, := not available, 09 = 2009, 12 = 2012, 13 = 2013, 17 = 2017, 18 = 2018, 19 = 2019.

Figure 2 - Position in relation to strongest and weakest performers

Source: DG Education, Youth, Sport and Culture, based on data from Eurostat (LFS 2020, UOE 2019) and OECD (PISA 2018).

2. Highlights

  • Apart from ensuring educational continuity during the pandemic, Bulgaria’s efforts over the past year focused on increasing participation in early childhood education and care, strengthening the teaching profession and pursuing the reform of higher education.
  • European funds will continue to provide significant support for national efforts towards increasing access to and improving the quality, equity and labour-market relevance of education and training.
  • The school climate in Bulgarian schools scores lower than the average in the EU. Despite measures taken by authorities, the pandemic has had a negative impact on the well-being of Bulgarian students. The school closures also risk exacerbating already significant inequalities in education and increase early school leaving.
  • The challenges in terms of access to training and skills development in Bulgaria remain considerable and may hamper workforce adaptation to rapid labour-market and technological changes.

3. A focus on well-being in education and training

At the policy level, ‘quality of school life’ and ‘personal development’ are used in relation to students’ well-being. The concept of well-being in education is not defined explicitly by the Education Act and its educational standards, which refer instead to ‘quality of school life’ and ‘personal development’. Relevant measures are implemented primarily through personal-development support centres, usually operating within the regional centres for inclusive education support. The centres provide inclusion and training services as well as services for general and skills development. In practice, they offer pedagogical and psychological support, training for students and support for families, and assistance in preventing violence and bullying. During the school closures, the centres provided technical and logistical support to facilitate remote learning.

Compared with the rest of the EU, Bulgarian teenagers feel less safe at school and experience lower well-being. As part of the 2018 Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA), Bulgarian 15 year-olds reported one of highest incidences of bullying in the EU. 34% said they were bullied at least a few times per month. This percentage is significantly higher than the EU average (22.1%) and 9 percentage points higher than in 2015. 44% of Bulgarian students reported skipping a day at least once in the two-week period before taking the PISA test, compared to the EU average of 25.1%. Furthermore, twice as many Bulgarian teenagers reported feeling lonely at school than on average in the EU (13%). Only 65% said they were satisfied with their life, while 35.5% did not feel they belonged at school (EU average: 35%).

Data collected before the pandemic showed that improving certain aspects of student well-being could significantly improve student outcomes. Using data from two international surveys1, a study (Institute for Research in Education, 2020) identified several aspects linked to the quality of school life in Bulgaria that are associated with better student outcomes. Improving students’ sense of belonging at school, especially those from disadvantaged backgrounds, is associated with the most significant improvement; increasing pupils’ sense of achievement is also associated with a very positive impact. Sense of achievement is defined as the self-perceived ability to cope with school work. Improving the safety of the school environment by reducing bullying and violence is also linked to improved outcomes. Furthermore, increasing the support provided by teachers could particularly benefit the outcomes for students who do not speak Bulgarian at home and whose parents have lower levels of education.

COVID-19 has had a negative impact on the well-being of Bulgarian students at all levels of education. All educational establishments were forced to close during the first wave of the pandemic. In the subsequent waves, educational institutions operated with physical presence and/or remote learning, in line with the epidemiological situation. During school closures, priority was given to physical presence for pre-school and primary school children. Lower and upper-secondary education operated for a time in a rotating system of face-to-face teaching and remote learning, with children in grades 6 and 9 spending the longest time in remote learning. Universities remained almost entirely closed. A survey by UNICEF conducted at the start of the pandemic (UNICEF, 2020) showed that around half of respondent students had experienced negative feelings due to limited social contacts. 35% of parents surveyed believed that their children’s mental health had deteriorated (ibid.).

Students from disadvantaged backgrounds were particularly impacted by school closures and the shift to remote learning. A recent survey of schools with a high concentration of children from vulnerable groups (Amalipe, 2021) showed that those schools had managed to significantly increase the percentage of students participating in remote learning. Wider use of synchronous forms of teaching was also noted compared to the first school closure of 2020. However, in the 2020/2021 school year, a high proportion of students still did not participate effectively in distance learning, increasing their risk of low achievement and of dropping out of school. The study further found that over 61% of respondent schools had managed to engage in remote education between 76% and 100% of their students. Another 31% engaged between half and three quarters of their students. The study also revealed that in spite of measures by authorities, challenges for distance learning remained; these included lack of IT devices, low student motivation and interest, and fatigue and stress among teachers (ibid.). With inequalities in education already high before the start of the pandemic and with the challenging school climate, the risk of falling further behind constitutes a particular risk for disadvantaged students, including Roma.

4. Investing in education and training

Bulgaria’s investment in education continued to increase in 2019 but was still one of the lowest in the EU. In 2019, Bulgaria’s general government expenditure on education increased by 14%, reaching the equivalent of 3.9% of GDP; this was largely due to increases in teachers’ salaries. Although above the EU average as a proportion of total public spending (10.7% vs EU average of 10%), spending on education remains among the lowest in the EU as a percentage of GDP (the EU average is 4.7%); this partly reflects a comparatively low level of public spending. Between 2021 and 2027, support for education measures under the European Social Fund (ESF+) is expected to more than double compared to 2014-2020, when ESF support for education totalled about EUR 352 million.

5. Modernising early childhood and school education

Key priorities for Bulgaria are to increase participation and improve the quality of early childhood education and care (ECEC). Despite sustained efforts in recent years, in 2019 only 79.9% of children aged between 3 and the starting age of compulsory school education (7) were attending ECE. This is significantly below the EU average of 92.8% and the EU-level target of 95% by 2030. In September 2020, Bulgaria lowered the starting age of compulsory pre-school education from 5 to 4 and it is planned to implement this gradually by 2024. In its newly adopted 2021-2030 strategic framework for education, Bulgaria set a participation target of 91% for children aged between 4 and the starting age of compulsory school education. In 2019, the enrolment rate for that age group was 82.7%, below the EU average of 95.3%. Between 2021 and 2027, ESF+ will continue supporting measures to facilitate the participation of disadvantaged children, including Roma. Also, a national quality framework for ECEC is being drawn up with support from the EU’s structural-reform support programme. The objective is to help Bulgarian authorities design a single set of tools − including a policy framework, indicators and benchmarks − to manage and monitor the quality of ECEC across the entire national system, in which responsibilities are currently split between the education and health sectors.

Figure 3 - Participation in early childhood education of pupils from age 3 to the starting of compulsory primary education, 2014 and 2019 (%)

Source: UOE, educ_uoe_enra21

Socio-economic factors and lack of places in some municipalities negatively impact participation rates. In the 2019/2020 school year the number of places available at national level exceeded the number of children, with a ratio of 108 to 100 (National Statistical Institute, 2020). That ratio was higher in northern Bulgaria and lower in the southern part, which includes Sofia. The uneven territorial distribution of ECEC institutions within cities and their often insufficient capacity in larger cities means that parents do not always find a place for their child (National Statistical Institute, Fundamental Rights Agency, 2021, forthcoming). In Sofia the overall ratio was 98 places for every 100 children and this increased markedly as of 2015 (from 87.7 places to 100 children), though the ratio varies across Sofia’s different districts. As a result of internal migration, infrastructure needs to be upgraded and additional infrastructure is needed in several major cities (e.g. Sofia, Plovdiv, Varna). At the same time, the participation of children from disadvantaged backgrounds − including Roma − is still low, with fees continuing to act as a barrier despite the implementation of some measures to address this issue. Overall, the low level of participation of children from hard-to-reach and/or segregated communities is still a challenge (National Statistical Institute, Fundamental Rights Agency, 2021, forthcoming). In April 2021, 52 municipalities (20% of the total) expressed their readiness to enrol 4-year-olds in the compulsory pre-school programme and received government funding for that purpose. An additional 100 municipalities (38% of the total) were expected to follow suit in September 2021.

Early school leaving remains a major challenge. In 2020, the rate of early leavers from education and training in the 18-24 age group was 12.8%, above the EU average of 9.9%. Early school leaving continues to be particularly high among Roma and in rural areas (25.5%). For 2030, the Bulgarian authorities have set themselves the ambitious target of reducing the rate of early leavers from education and training to 7%. Achieving such progress in the aftermath of school closures and remote learning will require sustained efforts. In recent years, reducing early school leaving has been a priority in Bulgaria. The mechanism that ensures outreach to out-of-school children, inclusion in compulsory education and prevention of dropout has begun to yield results. However, with net enrolment rates in school education at only around 85%, further efforts are needed to improve participation rates and reduce early school leaving. Between 2021 and 2027, ESF+ will support the mechanism and that it operates effectively.

Significant efforts were made to increase teachers’ salaries as a means to improve the attractiveness of the teaching profession. In 2019, 51% of Bulgaria’s school teachers (i.e. in both primary and secondary education) were older than 50. 11% were already at least 60 and only 6% of teachers were younger than 30. Raising salaries to increase the attractiveness of the profession was a priority. Between 2017 and 2021, the starting teacher salary almost doubled in nominal terms (from BGN 660 to BGN 1260). In 2020, the average wage of pedagogical professionals was 11% above the national average, though it still lagged below the national target of 120% (Ministry of Education and Research, 2021a). At the same time, the proportion of new pedagogical studies entrants increased, with 7.6% studying in 2020. To further attract young people into initial teacher-training programmes, tuition fees at public universities were abolished and additional scholarships were introduced. However, teacher education programmes still do not attract high-performing graduates from upper-secondary education. The average leaving grades of future teachers remain below that of candidates accepted into higher-degree programmes; between 40% and 65% graduating from pedagogical programmes do not enter the teaching profession (World Bank, 2021, forthcoming). Furthermore, available evidence suggests that the status of the teaching profession is generally low, although possibly improving as a result of higher salaries, and working conditions and advancement opportunities are perceived negatively compared to alternatives (ibid.).

Bulgaria has taken additional measures to strengthen initial teacher education (ITE) and continuous professional development (CPD). New requirements for the acquisition of professional teacher qualifications were adopted in February 2021 with a focus on strengthening the competence-based approach in both ITE and CPD. The state requirements for obtaining a vocational teacher qualification were also updated. Compulsory subjects were introduced in various pedagogy fields2, while others were reinforced with additional hours of training. It should be noted that the proportion of teachers taking part in professional development has increased markedly in the past few years3. Between 2021 and 2027, ESF+ is expected to continue providing support to upgrade teachers’ competences. A review and assessment of Bulgaria’s teacher policies conducted recently with EU support concluded that the system is guided by appropriate policies, standards, qualifications framework and institutional arrangement (World Bank, 2021, forthcoming). However, shortcomings in workforce planning and management have resulted in staff shortages, an unbalanced distribution of qualified teachers across schools, and an ageing workforce. These have contributed to stagnating learning outcomes (ibid).

Improving learning outcomes and equity in education remain key challenges for the school system. The findings of international and national assessments of student outcomes show that for many years the education system has not shown a stable trend of improving learning outcomes. Underachievement in basic skills, as measured by PISA, is twice as high as the European average (47% in reading, 44% in mathematics and 47% in sciences), with percentages above 60% among disadvantaged students. Bulgaria aims to reduce the proportion of underachieving students to 25% by 2030. Reaching this target will require substantial efforts and targeted policies to compensate for learning losses during the pandemic. Furthermore, in spite of efforts made in previous years (see European Commission, 2020a), students’ levels of digital skills is still low. According to the Digital Economy and Society Index (DESI), which collects data on digital skills based on self-reported information on the use of digital tools, 57% of young Bulgarians aged 16-19 had basic or above-basic digital skills, significantly below the EU average of 82%. Previous surveys (E. Paunova-Hubenova et al., 2019) have shown that meaningful integration of technology in the classroom was not strongly evident; for example, teacher reported lack of technical equipment and appropriate tools for digital education, as well as lack of skills. With a view to overcoming some of these challenges, the ESF+ will continue providing additional support for digitalisation in education.

Box 1: Equal access to school education in times of crisis

Through this REACT-EU project, the Ministry of Education and Science seeks to prevent interruption of the educational process and support inclusive education. The project helps ensure conditions for effective education and mitigates the risk of dropout associated with remote learning. The project directly addresses the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic and the needs of teachers and students. Several activities are carried out, such as the purchasing of technical equipment for pedagogical professionals and students, training of students to acquire distance-learning skills, training of pedagogical professionals to improve their teaching skills in an electronic environment, and training for educational mediators and parents. Some 210 000 people are expected to acquire distance-learning skills, while 20 000 teachers will gain an additional qualification. With a budget of EUR 56 million, the project started in March 2021 and has a duration of 35 months.

More information: UMIS 2020 (

6. Modernising vocational education and training and adult learning

The employment rate of recent graduates from vocational education and training (VET) is still low, indicating that labour-market relevance remains a challenge. Despite a slight decrease compared to the previous year, the latest available data show that enrolment in upper-secondary VET was 52.1% in 2019 (the EU average was 48.4%). However, after a significant increase to 73.5% in 2019, the employment rate of recent VET graduates fell to 69.6% in 2020, below the European average of 76.1%. Dual VET is being rolled out but challenges remain for its implementation. With ESF support, the number of students in dual VET increased substantially compared to 2016, when it was first introduced in legislation and piloted (in the 2019/2020 school year there were more than 5 200 students, compared to about 350 in 2016). 

Additional measures were taken to increase VET’s labour-market relevance and adjust to the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic. Through an Erasmus+ project, the Ministry of Education and Science started implementing a graduate-tracking mechanism for 2020 graduates from initial VET. It uses indicators designed for better understanding labour-market outcomes and employment characteristics by region, gender and specialisation, as well as qualitative indicators on the transition from training to employment. In addition, a survey is being developed to complement the missing data in administrative registers, such as satisfaction with acquired skills and their applicability in a working environment or in a subsequent higher degree. In the context of COVID-19, the national electronic library (e-content repository), created to assist teaching staff and learners in the switch to remote learning, also contains a VET section. Like students in general education, VET students without internet access or appropriate equipment were provided with printed material and supported by education mediators. Between 2021 and 2027, VET will continue to be supported by ESF+, as will further development of dual VET programmes.

The challenges of access to training and skills development in Bulgaria remain high and may hamper adaptation of the workforce to rapid labour-market and technological changes. In 2020 only 1.6% of the population aged 25-64 was enrolled in adult learning, well below the EU average of 9.2%. Upskilling and reskilling the population remain a significant challenge in fostering rapid adaptation to new work patterns such as distance working and working online. Labour-market policies in the current year and in future years will be focused on investing in mainly digital skills and upskilling and reskilling the labour force in accordance with new labour-market needs. Upskilling, reskilling and digital skills acquisition will be funded both by the State budget and by EU funds. For example, in 2021 the ESF-supported digital skills development operation was launched for implementation by mid-2023. Its aim is to identify key economic sectors with digital-skill needs and develop unified digital-skill profiles per profession. Sectoral frameworks for digital competences and tools for assessing them will also be developed. In addition, as of 2021 new opportunities are expected under ESF+. Utilising the funds to increase adult learning in line with labour-market needs in the light of the EU’s ‘green’ and ‘digital’ ambitions will be a key opportunity for Bulgaria.

7. Modernising higher education

Tertiary attainment is rather low. In 2020, 33% of Bulgarians aged 25-34 held a university degree, below the EU average of 40.5% and the EU-level target of 45% by 2030. At the same time, a marked gender gap persists, with 27.2% of men in this age group educated at tertiary level compared to 39.1% of women. In the 2020/2021 academic year, 43.8% of the population aged 19-23 were enrolled in tertiary-education programmes and this percentage has remained stable in recent years. Nevertheless, demographic factors, including lower birth rates, emigration and a high percentage of students studying abroad4, have led to falling student numbers in higher education − although the marked trends started slowing down even before the pandemic. As a result of these factors and the rather slow adjustment of the range of university courses on offer, the number of candidates is significantly below the number of university places available, making it even more important to improve access to higher education and internationalisation (Ministry of Education and Science, 2021b). Participation of students from disadvantaged backgrounds is rather low. To improve access, students from disadvantaged backgrounds received targeted support from the ESF+ from 2014 to 2020. Such measures will continue in the 2021-2027 programming period. The number of foreign students increased, accounting for 8% of the total in 2020.

Figure 4 -Tertiary educational attainment  (25-34) by sex, 2020

Source: Labour Force Survey, edat_lfse_03.

New measures to improve quality and labour-market relevance were put in place. Since 2015, Bulgaria has been using the funding system to shift graduate profiles towards qualifications in high demand on the labour market and has taken measures to attract students to the corresponding fields. To continue higher-education reform, several other measures were recently put in place. The higher-education governance model was changed by introducing performance contracts with state-funded universities. Full or partial funding of tuition fees from the State budget was made possible for students under contract with an employer, with the employer in turn providing internships during and upon completion of studies. Furthermore, a 2021-2030 higher education strategy was adopted. Its objective is to improve labour-market relevance, including by introducing a mechanism to update and create new curricula, link admissions with labour-market needs and promote digitalisation. Other objectives are to improve access to higher education and lifelong learning and to promote research, for example by establishing research universities. A higher-education map is already being prepared to help determine universities’ territorial structure by professional fields and specialties, in line with socio-economic development and labour-market needs. The map will inform admission numbers in public universities together with the Bulgaria University Ranking System (BURS), and will help identify opportunities for attracting foreign students. In addition, the government has expanded the list of priority programmes and allocated additional funding for these programmes.

Regional imbalances reinforce labour market mismatches. The draft Higher education map (Ministry of Education and Science, 2021c) showed a number of imbalances between demand for and supply of educational services at national and regional level and the labour-market outcomes for graduates. At the national level, only 53% of university places are filled. In 29 professional fields, uptake is less than half of the places available. The least attractive programmes include several considered priorities at national level, such as mathematics and engineering. The most attractive programmes are economics, pedagogy, medicine, ICT, law, administration and management. About half of Bulgarian students study in these fields. Of all Bulgaria’s universities, 27 (53% of the total) are situated in the southwest region, which includes Sofia, and only five (including branches of other universities) are in the north-west region. The higher-education strategy identifies additional challenges such as the mismatch in knowledge and skills between labour-market needs and the university courses on offer, as well as curricula that are outdated. There is also a need for more active participation of the business sector and for upgrading the skills of academic staff (ibid.). At the same time, additional challenges may also arise from the fact that universities have practically all remained in distance-learning mode for the entire academic year 2020/2021, with very limited periods of face-to-face teaching. This has not only affected the well-being of higher education students, it also risks affecting the acquisition of skills.

8. References

Amalipe (2021), Center for Interethnic Dialogue and Tolerance 2021, The distance learning over the past school year: what has happened

Council of the European Union (2020), Council Recommendation on the 2020 National Reform Programme of Bulgaria and delivering a Council opinion on the 2020 Convergence Programme of Bulgaria; National Agency for Vocational Education and Training (2019). Vocational education and training in Europe: Bulgaria [From Cedefop; ReferNet. Vocational education and training in Europe database.

Cedefop ReferNet Bulgaria (2020). Bulgaria: VET response to the Covid-19 outbreak.

Cedefop; ReferNet (2021). VET REF: developments in vocational education and training policy database. Cedefop monitoring and analysis of VET policies. [Unpublished.]

European Commission (2020a), Education and Training Monitor: Bulgaria

European Commission (2020b), ‘Country Report Bulgaria 2020’.

Education Bulgaria 2030 Association, новата нормалност Адаптиране къмили ефективни промени?

Institute for Research in Education (2020), Policy brief on quality of school life

Ministry of Education and Science, 2021a, Strategic Framework for the development of education, training and learning in the Republic of Bulgaria 2021-2030.

Ministry of Education and Science (2021b), Strategy for the development of higher education in the Republic of Bulgaria for the period 2021-2030

Ministry of Education and Science (2021c), National Map of Higher Education in Bulgaria, version in public consultation  

National Statistical Institute (2020), Kindergartens, children, pedagogical staff, places and groups in the kindergartens by statistical zones, statistical regions, districts and municipalities in 2019/2020 school year, 24 April 2020.

National Statistical Institute, Fundamental Rights Agency (2021, forthcoming), Key social inclusion and fundamental rights indicators in Bulgaria.

OECD 2019, Country Note Bulgaria,

Paunova-Hubenova, V. Terzieva and K. Todorova, ’The Role of ICT in Teaching Processes in Bulgarian Schools,’ 2019 29th Annual Conference of the European Association for Education in Electrical and Information Engineering (EAEEIE), Ruse, Bulgaria, 2019, pp. 1-6, doi: 10.1109/EAEEIE46886.2019.9000463.

Sofia University St. Kliment Ohridski, Quality of the continuing qualification of the pedagogical specialists through the perspective of teachers and students, 2019.

UNICEF, 2020, Rapid Assessment of COVID-19 impact on education in Bulgaria: Deepening learning loss and increasing inequalities, March 2020

World Bank (2021 forthcoming), Bulgaria Teaching Workforce: Policy Note and Recommendations, Analytical report assessing teacher workforce policy outcomes and providing recommendations for improving education workforce policy and planning processes efficiency.

Annex I: Key indicators sources

Indicator Eurostat online data code
Participation in early childhood education educ_uoe_enra21
Low achieving eighth-graders in digital skills IEA, ICILS.
Low achieving 15-year-olds in reading, maths and science OECD (PISA)
Early leavers from education and training Main data: edat_lfse_14.
Data by country of birth:edat_lfse_02.
Exposure of VET graduates to work based learning Data for the EU-level target is not available.
Data collection starts in 2021. Source: EU LFS.
Tertiary educational attainment Main data: edat_lfse_03.
Data by country of birth: edat_lfse_9912.
Participation of adults in learning Data for the EU-level target is not available.
Data collection starts in 2022. Source: EU LFS.
Public expenditure on education as a percentage of GDP gov_10a_exp
Expenditure on public and private institutions per student educ_uoe_fini04
Upper secondary level attainment edat_lfse_03

Annex II: Structure of the education system

Source: European Commission/EACEA/Eurydice, 2021. The Structure of the European Education Systems 2021/2022: Schematic Diagrams. Eurydice Facts and Figures. Luxembourg: Publications Office of the European Union.

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1 2018 PISA and 2016 Progress in International Reading Literacy Study (PIRLS).

2 E.g. ‘competence approach and innovation in education’, ‘inclusive education’, ‘information and communication technologies in training and digital work’.

3 In a survey conducted in 2019/2020 by Sofia University St. Kliment Ohridski, 83% of respondent teachers reported participating in at least 5 training and qualification courses over the past five years. One third reported participating in 10 courses (Education Bulgaria 2030, 2020).

4 In 2018, 8.8% of upper-secondary graduates from Bulgaria had completed tertiary education abroad.