Short-Changing Education Is No Way to Invest in the World’s Future

Students protest outside the National Assembly to demand a larger budget for university education, Quito, Ecuador, Sept. 9, 2021 (AP photo by Dolores Ochoa).
Students protest outside the National Assembly to demand a larger budget for university education, Quito, Ecuador, Sept. 9, 2021 (AP photo by Dolores Ochoa).
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On Oct. 27, Rishi Sunak, the U.K.’s chancellor of the exchequer, announced the government’s education budget, including additional spending earmarked to help students overcome the disruptions introduced by the coronavirus pandemic. Though billed as a boost to education expenditures, as Sunak himself admitted, the government’s current plans would only return per pupil spending—which was cut drastically as part of broader budgetary austerity imposed in the aftermath of the global financial crisis—to 2010 levels by 2024. As the Institute for Fiscal Studies director Paul Johnson told the Financial Times, Sunak’s spending plan reflects the “remarkable lack of priority” given to education […]

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