Public expenditure on education

In the year 2010, public expenditure on education amounted to some CHF 30 billion. Most of the public expenditure on education, around CHF 28.6 billion, comes from the cantons and their municipalities, while the Confederation provides CHF 1.4 billion.

  • Compulsory education (CHF 15.7 billion)
    Just over half of public expenditure on education is in the sector of compulsory education (including pre-school and special classes and special schools). The cantons and their municipalities provide the financing.

  • Baccalaureate schools and upper-secondary specialised schools (CHF 2.4 billion)
    The cantons and their municipalities are responsible for financing the schools of general upper-secondary education.

  • Vocational and professional education and training (VET: CHF 3.6 billion; tertiary level B PET: CHF 215.2 million)
    The cantons cover most of the public expenditure on vocational and professional education and training. Over the coming years, due to the new Federal Vocational and Professional Education and Training Act, the Confederation increases its share of public funding of VET/PET to one quarter of the total of public VET/PET expenditure.

    Alongside the public funding, professional organisations also contribute to the financing of vocational and professional education and training. To a considerable extent, the Federal PET Diploma Examinations and Advanced Federal PET Diploma Examinations, as well as job-related CET, are funded by the students and their employers.

  • Tertiary level A institutions (CHF 7.4 billion)
    The cantons cover most of the public expenditure of the cantonal universities and the universities of applied sciences, while the Confederation also makes financial contributions. The universities of teacher education are financed by the cantons. The two Federal Institutes of Technology are financed by the Confederation. The Confederation also supports the tertiary level A institutions via so-called second-party resources, which are allocated for research projects on the basis of competitions.

    In addition to the public funding on the part of the cantons and the Confederation, private bodies are also involved in the financing of tertiary level A institutions (e.g. via study fees, research mandates, revenue from CET, and donations).

Data: FSO (2010)

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Last update of this page: 19.02.2013

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