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Facts about Italy’s Education System

60 years of half-hearted management seem to be leading to ever widening cracks in Italy’s ailing about to be reformed education system.

Epolis, one of Milan’s free daily newspapers, carried an article today with some rather startling facts and figures concerning how Italy’s education budget is spent.  It would appear that education is not that important to Italy’s future.

97% On Salary Payments

That many of Italy’s schools appear to be crumbling will not come as a surprise when you learn that 97% of Italy’s education expenditure goes on salary payments.

3% On Running and Development Costs

This leaves a mere 3% for minor necessities such as daily running costs, building maintenance, training, support services, and research and development.  Parent’s buy text books in Italy, by the way.  I believe that part of the text book cost is tax deductible.

The total amount spent on education in Italy is around 41.9 billion Euros, with personnel costs eating up 41,17 billion, and day to day running costs being around 0.58 billion.

BMW Spends More on R&D Than Italy

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Lots of figures, I know.  Maybe this will help put them into proportion.  The well known German car manufacturer BMW planned to spend, according to its 2006 BMW Group Annual Report, about 6.5% of revenues on R&D alone.

Yes, maybe it is wrong to compare Italy’s education spend to BMW’s R&D expenditure, but seeing as educating children is an investment in the future productivity of a country, you would expect R&D costs to be much higher.  Well, I would.

Before someone points out that the education system does not generate revenues, please note that all education systems generate revenues, it’s just that they are called taxes.

Total Tax revenues Spent on Education in Italy?

If someone would like to do the calculations, I’d love to know just how much of Italy’s total tax revenues are being thrown at its education system.

Teacher Numbers to be Cut

In order to bring costs down, some 87,000 teaching places are to be cut.  Let’s just hope that the savings achieved are put to good use.

Please note that these figures do not include higher education, which kicks in once Italians are over 19.

Image from FreeFoto

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