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OECD Reviews of School Resources: Czech Republic 2016

image of OECD Reviews of School Resources: Czech Republic 2016

The effective use of school resources is a policy priority across OECD countries. The OECD Reviews of School Resources explore how resources can be governed, distributed, utilised and managed to improve the quality, equity and efficiency of school education.

The series considers four types of resources: financial resources, such as public funding of individual schools; human resources, such as teachers, school leaders and education administrators; physical resources, such as location, buildings and equipment; and other resources, such as learning time.

This series offers timely policy advice to both governments and the education community. It includes both country reports and thematic studies.

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Executive summary

There are entrenched inequities in the Czech school system. In international comparison, the average socio-economic background of students at a school is very strongly associated with the school’s average performance and educational mobility rates are the lowest in the OECD. Notably, there is significant economic variation among the fourteen Czech regions, with varying challenges in terms of internal migration and unemployment. However, the national funding mechanism to allocate funding for “direct costs” (including staff salaries) does not include weightings to address such inequities; simply, it allocates funding on a per student basis with a different set amount for five different age bands (the national “normatives”). The Czech regions are then responsible for allocating this funding to pre‐schools and basic schools (managed by municipal authorities) and to the schools they manage directly (mainly providing upper secondary education). Czech regions prepare regional development plans, however, regional funding mechanisms are rigid and overly complicated and impair the matching of funding to strategic priorities. At the same time, the majority of Czech regions have faced efficiency challenges in their school networks, with a large decline in the school-aged population. There is evidence of reorganisation and consolidation in the school networks, which has been supported by, among other factors, the per student funding allocation mechanism. However, the need to further consolidate remains a strategic challenge in several regions and notably for schools offering lower and upper secondary education.

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