Contributory education scheme: Theoretical basis and application
In: Investigaciones de Economía de la Educación 6
After a short criticism of the “self-funded education scheme” which is widely implemented in the world and often based on tuition fees, this article develops theoretical basis for a “contributory education scheme”. This model is characterised 1) by a universal access for students to grants allowing them to take charge of themselves during their higher education curriculum; and 2) by a funding regime relying in particular on the population that has benefited from grants, once studies are finished. The article first points out the limits of the self-funded education scheme. Then, it discusses the analogies and differences with pension systems implemented in countries like France. We derive theoretical motivations in favour of a contributory education scheme: The equity of access to higher education, the incentives for students and university to be efficient, as well as the contributory equity are discussed. The article proposes finally to assess, for France, the cost and the options concerning the transformation of the tax system that would be needed for funding such a reform. Beyond the individual income, variables like the degree obtained by the student are taken into account in our assessment. The conclusion draws research perspectives concerning the theoretical dimensions and the transition such a reform concretely implies.
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