The deal follows in the footsteps of the partnership first put together in 2019, which has already seen more than 15,000 Estonian school leavers given the opportunity to take the English C1 Advanced examination instead of their usual school-leaving test.
The usual test in Estonian schools is set at the B2 level of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages standard.
“We’re delighted to be continuing our work with the Ministry of Education in Estonia, and with our colleagues in Harno,” remarked Hanan Khalifa from Cambridge University Press & Assessment.
The first intake of C1 Advanced examinations due to be taken under the new agreement is expected to take place in Estonia in Spring 2023.
The renewal of the partnership will enable more than 18,000 Estonian students to take the English C1 test over the next four and a half years, allowing them to gain an English language qualification recognised by universities in Australia, Canada, the UK, the US and elsewhere.
The language examinations will be carried out by the Education and Youth Board (Haridus- ja Noorteamet, also known as Harno), a government agency of the Estonian Ministry of Education and Research tasked with the implementation of the country’s education and youth policies.
“In the previous round of the project, Estonian students consistently achieved results which were significantly higher than the global average for this high-level English exam,” Khalifa added.
“This new phase of the project… shows the confidence the Ministry has in Estonia’s students”
Khalifa praised these results as the outcome of the motivation and commitment displayed by the multiple stakeholders involved in the project, namely parents, students, teachers and the Estonian Ministry.
“This new phase of the project is even more ambitious which shows the confidence the Ministry has in Estonia’s students,” she added.
To celebrate the successful outcome of the first four-year partnership and mark the beginning of the new project, representatives from Cambridge joined Harno at a special event held in Tallinn in December 2022.