Where doubt begins, thinking begins.

Casino, Zug

Ladies and Gentlemen, to what extent does this conference make our students better students?

That's quite a mean question, at least to European ears, I know. Or even more mean: To what extent have the school reforms of recent years made our pupils better pupils? In Europe the answer is sobering: We do not know much about it. The Anglo-Saxon world knows more about it. Behind this is an old conflict between the empirical researchers in the Anglo-Saxon world and the humanities, which set the tone in Europe.

I have no problem with it if you don't want to measure the success of an education system or a school reform by its immediate results. So let us measure the success of an education system by the opportunities it creates. But let's talk about real opportunities, then. Is a late selection really better than a promotion along individual abilities? Can an education system which doesn't address a high rate of youth unemployment really serve as an example?

Where doubt begins, thinking begins.
I wish that for all of us.
And that is what I wish for all of us for this conference, too.
Let's doubt and let's think together – and let's make our students better students. That's what we are here for.
I have absolutely no doubt we can do this.
Thank you very much for your attention and welcome to Zug!