Conference “Contributions to the debate on financing for quality education” CIPPEC – T20 | Buenos Aires

Javier González, director of SUMMA, participated in a conference associated with T20 Argentina, coordinated by the Organization of Ibero-American States (OEI), CIPPEC and the Compromise for Educational Funding Group, which took place in the city of Buenos Aires.

The meeting focused on bringing international experiences that could serve to know different approaches on the subject of financing, regional challenges and positions of social organizations on it.

González made his presentation in Session 3: What can we learn from international experiences? moderated by Alejandra Cardini – CIPPEC (T20-GCFE). His presentation -“Why do markets fail in education?”- contextualized about the gap between the high investment in education made by developed countries versus the investment made by developing countries, and how that continues to increase in favor of the first ones. Less developed countries present limited government financing capacities in this field, which favors the increase of private sector participation, creating educational markets, where the logic of competition has been privileged for their development.

In general terms, González pointed out that according to the empirical evidence, the Chilean case -where the voucher system was implemented three decades ago- shows that competition among schools has not had a positive effect on the quality of education imparted. On the contrary, he added, the evidence does not recommend insisting on the voucher system, which is associated with higher degrees of educational inequality and school segregation.

Finally, González pointed out that among the challenges and policy implications posed by this context is the need to establish adequate institutional frameworks that safeguard the right to education in contexts of high participation of private providers, establishing regulations, resources, and accountability systems; and have balanced accountability systems: support versus monitoring/penalization. Finally, he pointed out, according to the evidence, that cooperation between schools seems to be a mechanism to improve educational quality more effectively than the competition.