The report of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) on the situation of Hungarian education is “positive” and comes as little surprise to Hungarian policymakers, the deputy state secretary for public education told a press conference.
The report published on Tuesday relied on data from 2015-2016 in its section on Hungary, Zoltán Maruzsa noted. Hungarian education has seen many positive changes since, he said.
The report praises Hungarian government measures in pre-school care, saying that an extremely high proportion of children, 95 percent, attend creches or kindergartens.
State funding in this area is 0.9 percent of GDP, higher than the OECD average 0.8 percent, he said.
Regarding state education, Maruzsa said the impact of teacher pay increases under the career model is visible in the OECD data. The real value of a high school teacher’s salary with 15 years’ experience fell by 35 percent between 2005-2013 but grew by 10 percent by 2015, he said. Wages grew further in the next two years, and the government is poised to take further steps for this growth to continue, he added.
Hungarian government spending on education was a little below 4 percent of GDP in 2015, he said.
“That does not rank us highly,” Maruzsa said, adding that funding for education has grown constantly since 2015.
The government in 2010 allocated 1,571 billion forints (EUR 4.8bn) to education, he said. Funding rose to 1,874 billion forints in 2015 and will be 2,039 billion (EUR 6.2bn) in the 2019 budget, he said.
The OECD’s Education at a glance report is published annually and comprises assessments of the state of education in 35 member states and a number of partner countries.
Featured image: MTI