Goal-oriented investments in education

Targeted investment in education

Invest more public and private money in education. Spend it on measures that deliver the highest return and have proven effects.  

29 June 2006
The Netherlands has the ambition of being one of Europe's top knowledge economies. To achieve this, extra investments in education need to be made by the government, by students and by businesses. At the same time, it is important to use existing resources more effectively, The government should invest in particular in measures that deliver the highest return and are evidence-based (see also the recommendation entitled Towards more evidence-based education). This was an important factor in preparing the investment agenda for education for the coming ten years.

Investment agenda: eight ambitions
The agenda includes eight ambitions:
* encourage child care facilities
* avoid learning delays
* strengthen the role of the teacher
* utilise all talent
* embed internationalisation in education
* strengthen the cultural task of teaching
* encourage lifelong learning
* upgrade educational infrastructure

Extra public funding is needed for compulsory education
Extra public funding is needed for compulsory education, particularly for the first three points listed: child care facilities, avoiding learning delays and the teaching profession.

Extra private funding should be targeted to higher education
Extra private funding - in combination with public funds - would be better targeted towards non-compulsory education, in particular higher education. Customisation and differentiation are needed. The Education Council would like to see elite programmes: intensive, small-scale programmes for 20% of students. If the quality of higher education improves, and the government adopts a more generous scholarships policy, private funding could increase. This could be achieved through gradually increasing tuition fees, for instance.

Finally, tax facilities for studying employees need to be expanded so that working people are given the opportunity to continue learning.