A review of the financing, resourcing and costs of education in public schools
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A review of the financing, resourcing and costs of education in public schools Briefing Education Portfolio Committee 4 March 2003. The task of improving quality, and equality of quality, in education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation. The approach.

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A review of the financing, resourcing and costs of education in public schools

Briefing

Education Portfolio Committee

4 March 2003


The task of improving quality, and equality of quality, in education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.


The approach education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.

  • Developments since 1994

  • Access

  • Funding

  • Equity

  • 10 focus areas

  • Financial transfers: from the national level to the school

  • Achieving optimal educator utilisation and development

  • Translating school allocations to non-personnel resources

  • Influencing the prices of education inputs

  • Preserving physical assets in schools

  • Respecting basic human rights

  • School nutrition

  • National Norms and Standards for School Funding

    • School allocations

    • School fees and other private inputs

  • Physical infrastructure

  • Translating school resources to learner performance

Recommendations


> Developments since 1994 education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.

  • Improved access to schools

  • MTEF expenditure improvements in real terms

    • Average annual growth of 1.3% currently

  • More equity

    • Inter-provincial equity better by 60%

    • Infrastructure, equipment remain major causes of inequity


> Developments since 1994 education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.


> Developments since 1994 education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.


> Developments since 1994 education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.


> Financial transfers: national to school education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.

  • Equity in theory, regressive funding in practice

  • Welfare pressures in poor provinces

  • Over 20% difference in per learner funding in POS

  • Educators crowd out all else in poor provinces

  • Many budgeting decisions not easily explained

  • National budget reform process

  • An education budget monitoring and support office

    • Improved budget analysis capacity

    • An education budget monitoring and support office to provide valuable support to PEDs

    • Monitoring of pro-poor funding

    • Involvement in ESF review process


> Financial transfers: national to school education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.


> Financial transfers: national to school education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.


> Financial transfers: national to school education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.


> Financial transfers: national to school education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.


> Financial transfers: national to school education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.


> Financial transfers: national to school education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.


> Optimal educator utilisation education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.

  • Utilisation issues

    • Average L:E vs maximum L:E

    • Small schools

    • Mobility of educators

  • Need to enhance quality of educators


> Optimal educator utilisation education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.

  • More efficient and practical teacher utilisation techniques

    • Discussions with educator organisations to arrive at practical teacher utilisation study

    • School timetabling support

    • Examination of mix of technology in the classroom

    • Assessment of the L:E ratio

    • Better administrative support in schools

  • Strengthening of current initiatives to develop teacher capacity and reward professional excellence

    • Whole range of quality issues, from curriculum knowledge to values and morale.

    • Rewards for educators who develop their own professional capacity


> Optimal educator utilisation education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.


> Translating school allocations to school resources education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.

  • Ultimately, all schools to become Section 21 schools

  • Good ‘resourcing agency’ service will always be needed by schools

  • Saving allocations for capital investment

  • Need to control runaway electricity/water consumption


> Translating school allocations to school resources education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.

  • Organisational and systems improvements to support effective procurement of goods and services for schools

    • Improved services to non-section 21 schools and service delivery assessments by the schools themselves.

    • Roll-out of best practice across the country to improve school level financial and resource management.

    • Study into support needed by increasing number of section 21 schools in the longer term.

    • Solutions to the current non-section 21 saving problem.

    • Tackling of excessive water and electricity consumption.


> Influencing the prices of inputs education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.

  • Procurement services to offer economy of scale benefits to all

  • Question around cost to schools of Government procurement regulations

  • Textbooks

    • An insufficiently competitive market

    • Expensive materials

    • Poorly coordinated ordering

  • Uniforms – local monopolies and expensive tastes


> Influencing the prices of inputs education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.

  • Negotiations and systems to lower the prices of school inputs

    • Open contracts negotiated by Government on behalf of schools.

    • Securing of preferential rates from utility and telephone companies.

    • Provisions for non-section 21 schools to procure at market prices.

  • Measures to lower the price of textbooks

    • Research into the efficiency of the textbook market.

    • Better lines of communication with the textbook industry.

    • Greater coordination of the textbook ordering process to produce economies of scale.


> Influencing the prices of inputs education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.

  • Measures to reduce the cost of uniforms

    • Elimination of sole supplier markets through policy on uniform specifications.

    • Engagement with clothing industry.

    • Long range fundamental change.


> Preserving physical assets in schools education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.

  • Asset registers in schools

  • Textbook retrieval

    • Poor systems cause enormous financial losses

    • School-level and system-level challenges


> Preserving physical assets in schools education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.

  • Improved asset management systems in schools

    • Better accounting of physical assets.

    • Storage facilities and management improvements for the preservation of assets.

  • Systems for higher textbook retrieval rates in schools

    • Better measurement and monitoring of textbook retrieval rates.

    • Schools-based capacity to retrieve books and system-wide tracking of which learners have received books from the state.

    • Integration of retrieval targets into general school management processes.


> Respecting basic human rights education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.

  • Worrying indications of disregard by employees for rights of poor

  • Attitude change a prerequisite to systems/policy change

  • Campaigns, education and prosecution to reduce the marginalisation of poor learners

    • A campaign to counteract the marginalisation of the poor by bureaucrats and teachers.

    • Stronger disciplinary action against transgressors.


> Respecting basic human rights education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.


> School nutrition education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.

  • Major system failure during 2002

  • Need for DoE to take more proactive stand – not just a health issue

  • School lunches for all poor GET learners

    • Strategies to counter organisational failure in the roll-out of feeding schemes.

    • Better research on the value added by school feeding schemes.

    • School involvement through e.g. vegetable gardens.

    • Minimum goal of ensuring that all poor GET learners receive a balanced meal on each school day.


> School nutrition education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.


> Norms & Standards: allocations education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.

  • Clearly no adequacy in e.g. R50 per learner, yet more research needed

    • Production functions, costed minimum package

  • Provinces differ in their poverty profiles

  • National resource targeting list approach proposed

  • Phased in funding via increases to baseline preferable

  • Poor learners in rich schools – no easy, equitable solutions


> Norms & Standards: allocations education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.

  • Completion of specific education resourcing studies

    • Formulation of a costed minimum package required by learners, to be used as a benchmark for planning.

    • Research into optimality of the pro-poor distribution curves currently used.

    • Extensive research into education production functions in South Africa.


> Norms & Standards: allocations education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.

  • A national resource targeting list approach to ensure adequate non-personnel recurrent funding in all poor schools

    • Greater clarity around what items are procured using the school allocation, and what items are procured through other means.

    • Better understanding of where allocations are inadequate.

    • Investigations into a national poverty targeting approach that would treat equally poor learners across the country the same in terms of non-personnel recurrent inputs.

    • Possible amendments to the current method of determining school poverty.

    • Clearer policy statement on poor learners attending non-poor schools.


> Norms & Standards: allocations education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.


> Norms & Standards: allocations education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.


> Norms & Standards: allocations education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.


> Norms & Standards: private inputs education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.

  • Official fees below R100, except in Q5

  • Large variation within Q5 – personal choice

  • 85% of parents find fees ‘reasonable’ – we need to focus on margins

  • ‘Hidden fees’ conservatively at 25% of formal fees

  • 6% of learners spend >1 hour getting to school

  • Collaboration with DSD on exemptions criteria necessary


> Norms & Standards: private inputs education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.

  • More stringently monitored and better informed fee-setting processes

    • Improved monitoring of fees charged in public schools.

    • Steps against demands for ‘hidden’ fees.

    • Broader participation of parents in fee-setting processes.

    • More stringent enforcement of procedures laid down by policy.

    • Adequate public resourcing to eliminate need for fees in poor schools.


> Norms & Standards: private inputs education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.

  • Fairer and more effective exemptions processes that are fully integrated into Government’s poverty alleviation programmes

    • Possible alignment of fee eligibility with eligibility for welfare grants.

    • Removal of fee, and hence exemptions pressures in poor schools.

  • Transport assistance to poor learners

    • Investigations into alternatives to school bus approach.

    • Greater capacity of households to afford transport costs due to alleviation of pressures in other areas.


> Norms & Standards: private inputs education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.


> Norms & Standards: private inputs education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.


> Norms & Standards: private inputs education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.


> Norms & Standards: private inputs education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.


> Norms & Standards: private inputs education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.


> Norms & Standards: private inputs education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.


> Norms & Standards: private inputs education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.


> Norms & Standards: private inputs education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.


> Physical infrastructure education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.

  • Pockets of especial deprivation, e.g. ex-Transkei

  • Migration results in absolute classroom shortages greater than net classroom shortages

  • Infrastructure planning highly complex – inadequate capacity


> Physical infrastructure education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.

  • The finalisation of a comprehensive capital investment and maintenance policy

    • Policy and tools to assist physical planning at the local level.

    • Holistic approach to school infrastructure, migration, admissions and school quality.

  • More strategic prioritisation from the national level of schools infrastructure development

    • Changes to measurement of backlogs.

    • Comprehensive national plan informed by better information about local need, and an improved capital investment framework.


> Physical infrastructure education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.


> Physical infrastructure education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.


> Translating inputs to outputs education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.

  • Current systems to monitor output: Matric, emerging GETC, Systemic Evaluation, SACMEQ, WSE

  • Possible to integrate the data to produce indicators at provincial and ‘district’ level

  • Careful dissemination of information could lead to greater public and institutional awareness of importance of outputs and relative efficiency of schooling


> Translating inputs to outputs education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.

  • An integrated performance monitoring system that is accessible to the public

    • Integration of data from current performance monitoring mechanisms.

    • More intensive research into feasible targets for outputs according to geographical area and poverty quintile.

    • Publication of average and normative performance scores down to the level of the district/circuit in order to improve accountability in the system.


> Translating inputs to outputs education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.


> Summary of recommendations education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.

  • An education budget monitoring and support office

  • More efficient and practical educator utilisation techniques

  • Strengthening of current initiatives to develop educator capacity and reward professional excellence

  • Organisational and systems improvements to support effective procurement of goods and services for schools

  • Negotiations and systems to lower the prices of school inputs

  • Measures to lower the price of textbooks

  • Measures to reduce the cost of school uniforms

  • Improved asset management systems in schools

  • Systems for higher textbook retrieval rates in schools

  • Campaigns, education, and prosecution to reduce the marginalisation of poor learners

  • School lunches for all poor GET learners

  • Completion of specific education resourcing studies


> Summary of recommendations education is perhaps the most important development task confronting our nation.

  • A national resource targeting list approach to ensure adequate non-personnel recurrent funding in all poor schools

  • More stringently monitored and better informed fee-setting processes

  • Fairer and more effective exemptions processes that are fully integrated into Government’s poverty alleviation programmes

  • Transport assistance to poor learners

  • The finalisation of a comprehensive capital investment and maintenance policy

  • A more strategic prioritisation from the national level of schools infrastructure development

  • An integrated performance monitoring system that is accessible to the public


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