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EDUCATION INDICATORS: An International Perspective


Indicator 44: Distribution of Funds by Level of Education

The distribution of current public expenditure across different levels of education reflects national educational goals and strategies concerning priorities for each educational level. The distribution is also influenced by the number of students enrolled at each level, which is, in turn, influenced by the duration of each level. To illustrate, public preprimary education is not available in all countries. Further, some countries or subsets of students within a country have an extra year of secondary school.1 Moreover, the indicator does not give a complete picture of the distribution of public resources between the two levels, since some countries did not classify all of their expenditures. This indicator should not be interpreted as a measure of the resources devoted to education, but rather as an indicator of the distribution of resources between education levels.

  • In 1992, the United States devoted approximately three-fourths of its current public education expenditure to preprimary through high school education and the remaining share to higher education. With the exception of Canada (which allocated a larger portion of expenditures to higher education) and Italy (which allocated a larger portion to preprimary through high school), the remaining G-7 countries also allocated approximately three-fourths of public education expenditure to preprimary through secondary education. The G-7 countries differed in the proportion of public education expenditure allocated to higher education. The proportion of public education expenditure devoted to higher education among the G-7 countries ranged from 36 percent in Canada to 9 percent in Japan.2


1/ This indicator distinguishes between two broad levels of education: the preprimary through secondary level and the higher education level.
2/ In Japan, and to a lesser extent France, a significant percentage of public education expenditures were undistributed (12.5 and 8.5 percent, respectively), making interpretation of the figures for these countries difficult.

Table 44:Distribution of current public expenditure on education, by education level and country: 1992


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
				    Percent of public education expenditure
				----------------------------------------------
				Preprimary-	Higher		Undistributed/
Country				secondary 	education		other
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
G-7
Canada				62.7		37.3			-
France				78.9		16.4			4.7
West Germany (former)		70.0		26.3			3.7
Italy				85.3		14.7			-
Japan                           78.6             8.3                   13.2
United Kingdom			79.5		20.5			-
United States                   75.0            25.0                    -
Other
Australia			66.7		33.3			-
Austria				77.2		22.8			-
Belgium				79.2		20.8			-
Czech Republic			81.2		18.8			-
Denmark				80.0		17.7			2.3
Finland				68.1		24.1			7.7
Hungary				76.5		21.8			1.7
Ireland				77.4		20.3			2.3
Netherlands			66.9	 	28.4			4.7
New Zealand			61.5		38.5			-
Norway				77.6		17.0			5.3
Spain				81.3		16.1			2.5
Sweden				85.0		15.1			-
Switzerland                     79.9            20.1                   14.5
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


-Not applicable or available.

NOTE: See supplemental note to Indicator 44 for details on indicator calculation for Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, the former West Germany, New Zealand, Norway, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom.

SOURCE: Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, Center for Educational Research and Innovation, International Indicators Project, 1995.


Figure 44: Distribution of current public expenditure on education, by education level and G-7 country:1,2,3 1992

Figure 44


1/ Countries are sorted in descending order by percentage of public education expenditure allocated to preprimary-secondary education.
2/ Totals may not add up to 100 due to rounding.
3/ Undistributed expenditures are allocated proportionally across other levels of education.

SOURCE: Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, Center for Educational Research and Innovation, International Indicators Project, 1995.

See Supplemental Notes on Figure and Tables.


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