Education spending in Italy well below EU average

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Italy spends 4.1% of its GDP on its children’s education, well below the European average of 4.8%, Save the Children Italia said in a report on Wednesday.

Save the Children Italia released their report on the state of education in Italy, today. Back to school: our new report “The world in a classroom”, says the 2023 school year resumes under the banner of the demographic crisis and inequalities in access to educational offers.

The report states that despite being the first to start again after the official end of the pandemic (declared by the WHO), the educational impoverishment that Covid-19 has caused in recent years remains.

Also in the foreground is the even more complex obstacle course for the over 800,000 students with a migrant background in the Italian school system. That is: 1 in 10 of those enrolled in the country’s schools.

Education opportunities for migrant children

The organisation has a campaign and petition underway to ask Parliament to reform the law on Italian citizenship for children born or raised in Italy. They want the government to guarantee effective school inclusion policies that support the educational paths of students with a migratory background. The objective is to reduce inequalities in learning.

Investment in education

Investments in education are also falling again. Today, Italy’s GDP spend stands at 4.1% against a European average of 4.8%. Added to this is the lack of services such as nursery schools, canteens, and full-time services, which still remain the prerogative of a few.

Coverage in public and private 0-2 year-old educational facilities in the 2021/2022 educational year is equal to 28 places available per 100 resident children. This again is well below the European target of 33% by 2010, and considerably distant from the new target established at the European level of 45% by 2030.

According to the latest available data (school year 2021/2022), only 38.06% of primary school classes are full-time. This has grown compared to 5 years earlier, 32.4% in the school year 2017/2018.

One of the most excruciating statistics is the data relating to school dropout. The figure in Italy sits at 11.5% versus the European average of 9.6% (data relating to 2022).

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