Expenditure on education

In the year 2014, public expenditure on education amounted to some CHF 36 billion. Most of the public expenditure on education, around CHF 29.3 billion, comes from the cantons and their municipalities, while the Confederation provides CHF 6.1 billion.

  • Compulsory education (CHF 17.8 billion)
    Just under 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 2.3 billion)
    The cantons and their municipalities are responsible for financing general upper secondary level schools.

  • Vocational and professional education and training (vocational education and training, VET: CHF 3.5 billion; tertiary level professional education: CHF 370 million)
    The cantons cover most of the public expenditure on vocational and professional education and training. On the basis of the Federal Act on Vocational and Professional Education and Training, the Confederation funds one quarter of total public VPET 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 Diploma of Higher Education Examinations and Advanced Federal Diploma of Higher Education Examinations, as well as job-related CET, are funded by the students and their employers. From 2018 anyone completing a course to prepare for the Federal Diploma of Higher Education or the Advanced Federal Diploma of Higher Education Examinations will receive financial support from the Confederation.

  • Higher education institutions and research (CHF 11.4 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 higher education 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 higher education institutions (e.g. via study fees, research mandates, revenue from CET, and foundations).

Data: FSO

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Last update of this page: 27.08.2018

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