The ALP came down with a bout of OECDitis yesterday, a condition that afflicts many politicians and commentators when they offer arguments assuming that whatever on average happens in other OECD countries Australia should do as well. The virus yesterday was the 2007 edition of the OECD’s statistical compendium, Education at a Glance (at 451 pages, it is very long glance).
The problem, according to the ALP, is that:
* Australia is the third worst of all OECD countries – ahead of only Korea and the United States — on public education spending as a proportion of total education spending;
* Public investment in preschool has languished at just 0.1 per cent of GDP, the equal lowest of all OECD countries with Korea; and
* Public investment in tertiary education has fallen by four per cent at the same time the average OECD investment increased by 49 per cent with Australia being the only country to record a drop in public investment.
Third worst of all OECD countries on public spending as a proportion of all education spending? Read the rest of this entry »