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CIES 2017 / Data revolution : Private funding and equity in education


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This panel (organized by UNESCO Institute for Statistics - at CIES 2017) will present the current status of available data on private spending on education, by discussing the methodological aspects, the data utilization and their limitations. We will explore possible solutions aimed at closing the data gap on private funding for education. These include the potential benefits offered by the National Education Account methodological framework, along with other complementary tools aimed at improving data quality and coverage.
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CIES 2017 / Data revolution : Private funding and equity in education

  1. 1. Private funding and equity in education Current data challenges and potential way forward CIES, Atlanta, March 6th, 2017 Jean Claude Ndabananiye Education Policy Analyst
  2. 2. OUTLINE I. Background and rationale : the critical need for comprehensive and better statistics on private funding of education… II. …but important challenges and data gaps remain III.Possible solutions and way forward
  3. 3. I. THE CRITICAL NEED FOR BETTER STATISTICS ON PRIVATE FUNDING OF EDUCATION… With the newly enacted SDG4, the education 2030 Framework for Action calls for specific indicators on equity-focused education financing : Education expenditure per student by level of education and sources of funding : will require data not only on public funding, but also private expenditure on education  Years of free and compulsory education (number of) : available data show that even in a context of fee-free education, families continue to be charged ‘hidden’ fees  Scholarships : will require detailed statistics for better targeting of beneficiaries
  4. 4.  faced with limited possibilities to substantially increase their public resources to fund the expansion and quality of education provision… Private funding of education is also an increasingly key topic in equity-related policy discussions in developing countries…. 5.5 22.2 35.3 0.0 10.0 20.0 30.0 40.0 MIN (SOUTH SUDAN) SSA AVERAGE MAX (SENEGAL) Education as % of total recurrent governement expenditure 63.0 29.7 7.8 MAX (GUINEA BISSAU) SSA AVERAGE MIN (SAO TOMÉ & P) HH spending on education as % of total (Public+HH) spending on education …increasing families’ contributions will be inevitable but the question is how to better tap into private funding with regards to issues
  5. 5. Cape Verde Mauritania Togo DRC Comoros Malawi Sierra Leone Rwanda Gambia Tanzania Côte d'Ivoire 0.0 2.0 4.0 6.0 8.0 10.0 12.0 14.0 Parity indices (Q5/Q1) for access to education, selected SSA countries Access to primary Access to lower secondary Access to upper secondary Several SSA countries are faced with huge wealth-based inequalities in access to upper levels of education.. But that’s where governments spend the most
  6. 6. 25.6% 20.0% 15.7% 2.4% 23.9% 20.7% 8.8% 7.1% 50.5% 59.3% 75.5% 90.5% PRIMARY LOWER SECONDARY UPPER SECONDARY HIGHER EDUCATION SHARE OF ENROLMENT NUMBERS BY WEALTH QUINTILES AND LEVEL OF EDUCATION, MALI 2015 Q1-Q2 (poor) Q3 (Middle) Q4-5 (Rich) 2,2 M pupils 647 000 184 000 80 000 student s Case of Mali, 2015
  7. 7. ... but that’s where, unexpectedly, Malian government spends the most and HH contribute relatively less, (Mali 2015) 131 176 588 1 251 23% 22% 7% 10% - 500 1 000 1 500 Primary Lower secondary Upper secondary Higher education 0% 25% Total (public+HH) spending per student
  8. 8. As a consequence, large share of public resources only benefits to portions of (relatively) wealthy individuals, raising issues of equity in the allocation of public resources. Envisaged initiatives include:  Fee-free primary & lower basic education for all (SDG4)  Wealth-based targetting of scholarship beneficiaries, Several policy implications
  9. 9. The extent and nature of household contributions to education At what extent do HH contribute at different levels of education? What items do they finance by level of education…? At HH level, it is important to assess the magnitude of education spending as compared to other items (health, food, etc.) The relative weight of education funding in total HH spending (by income level…) In this perspective, data on HH education expenditure is essential to effectively assess:
  10. 10. II. … BUT SERIOUS CHALLENGES AND DATA GAPS REMAIN Education finance statistics today face the biggest challenges, and private expenditure appears to be in the most severe situation. According to UIS only 22% of countries globally report data on private funding on education and 55% of ESA conducted by IIEP/PDK (2010-2016) include data/analysis on household expenditure This situation results from many factors, the main which are:  weak statistical capacities to regularly collect and report data on household (HH) and other private entities
  11. 11. III. POSSIBLE SOLUTIONS AND WAY FORWARDStandardized an comparable methodology: clear definitions and boundaries taking into account developing countries’ context Exhibit : NEA, a comprehensive and unified framework to address finance data challenges Development of a dedicated questionnaire on HH education spending and … … exploration of alternative sources of financial data such as school censuses Capacity building on the production and use of education finance statistics on a regular basis though ESA, annual PER
  12. 12. NATIONAL EDUCATION ACCOUNTS (NEA) NEA : A comprehensive data collection and processing exercise on education finance covering:  Who finances education?  How much do they spend?  Where do the funds go?  What are the funds being spent on? Comprehensive : All education levels, all sources of funding, all education providers Integrated/coherent framework: Cohesive financial flows and accounting framework Comparable : Anchored within existing international classifications (ISCED, SNA, GFS)
  13. 13. WITHOUT NEA EXPENDITURE ON EDUCATION IS VASTLY UNDERESTIMATED 2.2% 4.1% 3.0% 5.0% 3.8% 2.2% 3.5% 1.8% 2.0% 0.6% 0.2% 0% 5% 10% Uganda Côte d'Ivoire Nepal Viet Nam Total expenditure on education as % of GDP Other (Off- budget donors, NGOs, …) Households
  14. 14. IV. CONCLUDING REMARKS  Data on private funding of education are critically needed to measure and monitor progress towards several equity-related SDGs targets and inform equitable (re)-allocation of public resources and cost- sharing between government and students’ families  Considerable methodological challenges surround the production and use of data on private funding  NEA and (other tools) could provide countries with regular and quality data to close the gap on education finance statistics