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The aim of this study has been to explore possible reasons for the performance gap between Estonian and Hungarian students by means of document analysis. In Estonia, there are only slight studentperformance differences on both a European and a global scale, whereas these differences in Hungary are significant. Compared to the strong selectivity inthe Hungarian system, the Estonian education systemis explicitly comprehensive, although there are signs ofselection as well. Unlike the Hungarian school system, the gap-compensating capability of the Estonian system is particularly good. In Hungary, the performance gap betweenstudents and schools is significant. In Estonia, it is the latter that causes problems, but not to the same extent as in Hungary. Education in Estonia has a high value both on a traditional and a societal scale; its empowering role insocial status as a lever of mobility is clear. The performance gap among Estonian students can be observedin the performance of students in a segregated Estonian-and Russian-speaking education system, the underlying social problem being the integration of the Russian-speaking population. According to related studies, the difference within the methodology of Estonian and Russian schools plays a major role in the performance gap between Estonian and Russian students. This study foundthat the same gap between Hungarian and Estonian students isnot suited to drawingparallels to the Hungarian system –due to differences in social and historical backgroundsas well as the fact that there are two parallel,Estonian-and Russian-speaking education systems in Estonia.