The Canton of Basel-Stadt intends to suspend leaving examinations at grammar schools and the Specialised Matura School

The canton is suspending all leaving examinations at grammar schools, the FMS and for the vocational baccalaureate [Berufsmaturität] until 20 May 2020, pending a decision by the Federal Government.

24/04/2020 (09:30)
Press release
Department of Education

The Department of Education of the Canton of Basel-Stadt has decided to suspend matura and leaving examinations at the Specialised Matura School, due to begin from 11 May, until 20 May 2020. The Swiss Conference of Cantonal Ministers of Education applied to the Federal Council for permission for the cantons to suspend examinations. Due to the exceptional conditions affecting education and everyday life as a result of the pandemic, the Department of Education intends not to hold leaving examinations at grammar schools and the Specialised Matura School this year. It is not yet clear whether the Federal Government will allow this.

Events of recent weeks: On 16 April 2020 the Federal Council decided to extend the closure of secondary schools [Mittelschulen] and vocational colleges [Berufsfachschulen] until at least 8 June 2020. In order to clarify the actual effects, the competent Swiss Conference of Cantonal Ministers of Education (EDK) asked all of the cantons about holding matura examinations. On this basis, the EDK made an application to the Federal Council on 21 April 2020 asking that the cantons be granted the opportunity not to hold leaving examinations at grammar schools and specialised secondary schools [Fachmittelschulen]. There can be no certainty with regard to legality and planning until the Federal Council has made a decision.

The Department of Education will make a decision about postponing or cancelling leaving and matura examinations as soon as guidelines are provided by the Federal Government. The Department of Education regrets that this process has been delayed further, as it was counting on there being clarification this week. Until a decision is issued by the Federal Government, suspension is the only way to give everybody involved temporary planning security, at least until 20 May.

The decision was made in consultation with the cantons of Basel-Landschaft and Solothurn, where written examinations would also already have started at the beginning of May.