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Education - Education

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4.1 Ireland: Real current public expenditure on education, 2004-2013
     
 € per student at 2013 prices€m at 2013 prices
 LevelReal current public expenditure
YearPrimary1SecondThird
20045,7247,81910,2076,810
20055,8278,16210,5607,047
20066,0298,52111,0807,407
20076,1718,97510,9967,728
20086,2849,09610,8657,964
20096,5259,19410,3148,242
20106,4158,9019,8978,193
20116,3778,8039,1648,105
20126,1968,6308,4207,908
20136,2748,2528,1267,869
 Source: Department of Education and Skills, CSO
1 Second level includes further education, e.g. post-Leaving Certificate programmes.

 

  • Real expenditure per student, (i.e., expenditure adjusted for inflation), increased by 9.6% at primary level and by 5.5% at second level over the period 2004-2013.
  • However at third level there was a decrease of over a fifth (-20.4%) in real expenditure per student over the same time period.
  • Real expenditure per student in 2013 at primary level was 77% that at third level.
  • In 2004 real expenditure per student at second level was just over three-quarters (76.6%) that at third level but by 2013 it stood at €8,252, more than the third level expenditure of €8,126.
  • Current public expenditure on education in real prices rose by 15.6% between 2004 and 2013, from €6,810 million to €7,869 million.
PrimarySecondThird
20045724.05149801957818.8741244250810207.0595515709
20055826.716683779548161.8056547761710559.8317690532
20066029.248708492738520.6298176838911080.2142846429
20076170.854119011098975.0988019681210996.4921013131
20086284.344116131239095.6396800649510865.4083406707
20096525.305087895449194.1691240133810314.1852152488
20106415.004900536968901.255260540369896.94193956796
20116377.293876163788803.358614077619163.89439935895
20126195.686910166638629.709956818018419.57974014624
20136274.407028922668251.760796139338126.42596679306
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4.2 Ireland: Student numbers1 by level, 2004-2013
    
  number
 Level
YearPrimarySecondThird (full-time equivalents)
2004447,337336,775158,297
2005452,734334,060159,323
2006463,341332,929160,361
2007477,489334,277161,964
2008491,432337,599166,099
2009501,748345,062174,080
2010507,460352,855181,516
2011512,374357,283184,622
2012520,444360,567186,654
2013530,380364,579188,594
Source: Department of Education and Skills
1 Only students in institutions which are aided by the Department of Education and Skills are included in this table.

 

  • The number of primary level students increased strongly by nearly a fifth (18.6%) between 2004 and 2013, rising from 447,337 to 530,380.
  • Between 2004 and 2006 the number of second level students dropped from 336,775 to 332,929. Over the following seven years the numbers increased steadily to stand at 364,579 in 2013, an increase of 8.3% on the 2004 figure.
  • The number of full-time equivalent third level students increased by nearly a fifth (19.1%) between 2004 and 2013, rising from 158,297 to 188,594.
PrimarySecondThird (FTEs)
2004447336.6336775.4158297.25
2005452734.4334060159322.896
2006463341332929.4160360.86
2007477489334277161963.782
2008491432337598.6166098.992
2009501747.6345062174079.76
2010507459.6352855181515.568
2011512374.2357283184622.396128
2012520444360567186654.366192
2013530380364579188593.978
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4.3 EU: Public expenditure on education1, 2009-2011
     
  % of GDPper pupil/student in €PPS
Country2009201020112011
Denmark8.78.88.810,211
Malta5.36.78.010,375
Cyprus8.07.97.911,049
Ireland (% of GNI)7.77.67.58,252
Sweden7.37.06.88,739
Finland6.86.96.87,831
Belgium6.66.66.69,088
Ireland ( % of GDP)6.46.46.28,252
United Kingdom5.66.26.07,876
Netherlands6.06.05.97,964
Austria6.05.95.89,714
France5.95.95.77,716
Slovenia5.75.75.76,818
Portugal5.85.65.35,771
EU5.45.45.36,914
Lithuania5.65.45.24,044
Estonia6.05.75.24,074
Germany5.15.15.07,493
Latvia5.65.05.03,599
Poland5.15.24.9:
Spain5.05.04.87,452
Hungary5.14.94.74,230
Czech Republic4.44.34.55,207
Italy4.74.54.36,530
Croatia4.44.34.23,932
Slovakia4.14.24.14,284
Bulgaria4.64.13.82,646
Romania4.23.53.12,088
Greece4.1::4,479
Luxembourg3.2::13,033
     
Iceland7.87.67.47,693
Norway7.26.96.710,605
Switzerland5.45.25.310,561
Turkey::4.12,464
Source: Eurostat
1 2005 data used for Greece and 2007 data for Luxembourg.
  • Public expenditure on education in Ireland was 6.2% of GDP in 2011, above the EU average of 5.3%, and the seventh highest in the EU.
  • Ireland had the fourth highest expenditure on education in 2011 when calculated as a percentage of GNI.
  • When expenditure is examined per pupil/student in Purchasing Power Standards (PPS), Ireland had the eighth highest expenditure in the EU in 2011.
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4.4 EU: Ratio of students to teachers, 20121
     
ratio
CountryPrimary and secondaryPrimaryLower secondaryUpper secondary
Luxembourg9.09.222.67.6
Greece9.49.47.77.3
Lithuania8.110.17.57.8
Hungary11.310.710.612.5
Latvia10.011.07.910.7
Poland10.711.09.910.9
Malta9.611.58.09.1
Denmark:11.83.7:
Sweden12.111.811.313.2
Portugal9.911.99.67.6
Austria10.112.09.09.8
Italy12.312.111.813.0
Belgium10.512.58.210.1
Estonia12.513.19.914.1
Spain11.713.410.69.9
Finland13.113.68.916.1
Cyprus11.514.010.010.1
Croatia10.714.29.69.7
Slovenia12.615.97.914.1
Germany15.416.013.913.7
Ireland15.716.2:15.0
Slovakia14.116.812.813.9
Bulgaria13.917.512.812.3
Romania15.418.113.015.9
Czech Republic13.218.911.111.3
France14.718.915.59.9
Netherlands16.520.815.636.9
United Kingdom17.821.114.217.1
     
Norway8.610.39.84.6
Iceland10.910.410.711.7
Macedonia12.715.39.913.8
Turkey18.920.120.116.2
Source: Eurostat
1 2007 data used for lower and upper secondary for Greece and 2011 data used for primary for Denmark,

 

  • Ireland had a student to teacher ratio of 16.2 in primary education in 2012. This was the eighth highest ratio in the EU. The lowest ratio was 9.2 in Luxembourg while the highest was 21.1 in the United Kingdom.
  • The overall student to teacher ratio for primary and secondary level education for Ireland in 2012 was 15.7 which was the third highest out of the 27 countries in the EU for which data was available.
  • The highest overall student to teacher ratio for primary and secondary level education was 17.8 in the United Kingdom while the lowest was in Lithuania at 8.1.
  • Ireland had the fifth highest student to teacher ratio for upper secondary education at 15, while the lowest ratio was in Greece at 7.3 and the highest was in the Netherlands at 36.9.
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4.5 EU: Primary and lower secondary average class size, 2012
   
CountryPrimaryLower secondary
Lithuania15.219.8
Latvia15.714.9
Luxembourg15.719.3
Croatia16.920.8
Estonia17.015.7
Greece17.321.9
Slovakia17.319.6
Austria18.321.1
Cyprus18.421.2
Poland18.422.4
Slovenia18.719.6
Italy19.021.0
Romania19.420.9
Finland19.420.3
Czech Republic19.821.3
Malta19.821.0
Denmark20.621.1
Bulgaria20.722.1
Portugal20.822.5
Hungary20.921.2
Germany21.024.5
Spain21.424.5
Netherlands22.6:
France22.725.1
Ireland24.420.3
United Kingdom25.119.3
   
Macedonia17.919.4
Iceland18.820.0
Switzerland19.118.5
Turkey24.028.3
Source: Eurostat
1 2007 data used for Ireland and 2010 data used for Switzerland for lower secondary.
  

 

  • The average class size in Ireland for primary education was 24.4, the second highest among reporting EU countries, after the United Kingdom at 25.1.
  • The lowest average class size for primary education was 15.2 in Lithuania.
  • At lower secondary level, Ireland had the joint eighth lowest average class size at 20.3. The lowest was in Latvia in 14.9 while the highest was in France at 25.1.
This map is © Ordnance Survey Ireland. All rights reserved. License number 01/05/001.
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4.6 EU: Persons aged 25-34 with third level education by sex, 2013
     
% of population aged 25-34
CountryPersonsMalesFemalesPercentage points differential
Lithuania50.542.458.7-16.4
Cyprus50.342.857.2-14.4
Ireland48.542.354.3-12.0
Luxembourg45.839.951.9-12.0
Sweden45.238.752.1-13.3
United Kingdom44.843.146.5-3.3
Estonia43.432.954.4-21.5
Belgium42.235.349.1-13.8
France41.937.246.4-9.1
Netherlands41.837.546.2-8.8
Finland40.131.649.0-17.4
Latvia40.027.752.8-25.1
Spain39.634.245.2-11.0
Poland37.529.845.5-15.7
Denmark37.430.045.0-15.0
Slovenia36.626.947.3-20.4
EU35.831.140.5-9.4
Greece35.830.841.0-10.2
Hungary32.325.939.0-13.1
Portugal30.823.837.6-13.8
Germany29.927.632.2-4.6
Slovakia29.724.235.4-11.2
Bulgaria29.421.837.6-15.8
Czech Republic28.824.233.7-9.6
Romania28.725.332.3-6.9
Malta28.623.633.9-10.3
Austria25.123.526.7-3.3
Italy23.518.328.7-10.4
Croatia19.716.423.3-6.9
     
Norway46.837.556.5-19.1
Switzerland42.944.341.52.7
Iceland38.030.045.8-15.8
Macedonia26.421.531.5-10.1
Turkey21.322.520.12.4
Source: Eurostat LFS

 

  • Close to half (48.5%) of the population aged 25-34 in Ireland had third level education in 2013. This was the third highest rate in the EU and compares with 35.8% across the EU as a whole.
  • In both Lithuania and Cyprus more than half of the population aged 25-34 had a third level qualification in 2013.
  • More females than males aged 25-34 had third level education in all EU countries with Latvia having the highest percentage points differential of 25.1.
  • In Ireland over half (54.3%) of females aged 25-34 had a third level qualification, compared to 42.3% of males.
  • The proportion of the population aged 25-34 in Ireland with third level education has risen steadily in recent years, from 39.6% in 2004 to 48.5% in 2013, an increase of nearly 9 percentage points. (See chart for data.)
Persons aged 25-34 with 3rd level education
200439.6109462374243
200540.0373642464555
200641.0668376847305
200742.3491469633812
200843.3710448490742
200945.0859418525473
201045.5669664916565
201145.0293923654593
201246.925812973861
201348.5200138069625
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4.7 EU: Student performance on the mathematical, reading and scientific literacy scales, 2012
    
Mean score of 15 year old students
CountryMathematical literacyReading literacyScientific literacy
Netherlands523511522
Estonia521516541
Finland519524545
Poland518518526
Belgium515509505
Germany514508524
Austria506490506
Ireland501523522
Slovenia501481514
Denmark500496498
Czech Republic499493508
France495505499
OECD average494496501
United Kingdom494499514
Latvia491489502
Luxembourg490488491
Portugal487488489
Italy485490494
Spain484488496
Slovak Republic482463471
Lithuania479477496
Sweden478483485
Hungary477488494
Greece453477467
Romania445438439
Cyprus440449438
Bulgaria439436446
    
Switzerland531509515
Iceland493483478
Norway489504495
Croatia471485491
Turkey448475463
Source: OECD, Educational Research Centre

 

  • Ireland had the 8th highest mathematical literacy for 15 year old students among participating EU countries in 2012, with a score of 501, above the OECD average of 494. The highest scores in the EU were in the Netherlands, Estonia and Finland.
  • In reading literacy, Ireland had the second highest score in 2012 among participating EU countries, with a score of 523 and was well above the OCED average of 496. The highest score in the EU was in Finland at 524.
  • Ireland ranked joint 5th highest for scientific literacy with a score of 522, compared to an OECD average of 501. Finland, Estonia and Poland had the highest scores in the EU for scientific literacy.
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4.8 EU: Early school leavers, 20131
    
% of population aged 18-24
CountryPersonsMalesFemales
Croatia3.74.72.6
Slovenia3.95.02.6
Czech Republic5.45.45.5
Poland5.67.93.2
Luxembourg6.18.43.7
Lithuania6.37.84.7
Slovakia6.46.76.1
Sweden7.17.96.2
Austria7.37.77.0
Denmark8.09.96.2
Ireland8.49.86.9
Cyprus9.114.84.2
Netherlands9.210.97.4
Finland9.310.48.3
Estonia9.713.65.8
France9.710.78.8
Latvia9.813.65.8
Germany9.910.49.3
Greece10.112.77.6
Belgium11.013.28.7
Hungary11.812.511.1
EU12.013.610.2
United Kingdom12.413.711.2
Bulgaria12.512.312.7
Italy17.020.213.7
Romania17.318.616.0
Portugal19.223.614.5
Malta20.823.218.4
Spain23.627.219.8
    
Switzerland5.45.65.2
Macedonia11.49.113.9
Norway13.715.711.6
Iceland20.524.416.4
Turkey37.535.039.9
Source: Eurostat LFS
1Persons aged 18-24 with, at most, lower secondary education and not in further education or training.
 

 

  • About one in twelve of those aged 18-24 in Ireland had left school with, at most, lower secondary education in 2013.
  • The EU average was 12% and varied from 3.7% in Croatia to 23.6% in Spain.
  • 9.8% of males aged 18-24 in Ireland had left school early while the rate for females was lower at 6.9%.
  • The proportion of males aged 18-24 who left school early is higher than females in all EU countries except Bulgaria and the Czech Republic.
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4.9 EU: Mathematics, Science and Technology graduates, 2012
per 1,000 population aged 20-29
CountryMalesFemalesTotal
Lithuania32.812.823.0
Ireland33.012.622.5
France31.113.122.1
Finland30.512.421.7
United Kingdom27.312.119.8
Portugal23.814.919.4
Slovenia26.111.819.3
Denmark23.314.218.8
Romania21.615.818.7
Poland21.114.517.9
Slovakia22.613.117.9
Croatia22.412.317.4
EU22.911.217.1
Czech Republic22.011.116.7
Austria24.28.416.4
Germany23.19.016.2
Sweden21.110.615.9
Spain21.39.815.6
Greece16.810.913.9
Latvia18.58.313.5
Bulgaria16.110.413.3
Estonia16.39.813.2
Italy15.410.813.2
Belgium19.56.313.0
Malta16.15.711.1
Netherlands16.35.010.7
Hungary13.45.49.5
Cyprus9.38.89.0
Luxembourg3.22.32.8
    
Switzerland26.96.917.0
Iceland20.211.315.8
Norway14.36.510.5
Turkey13.17.110.1
Macedonia9.06.27.6
Source: Eurostat
1 2011 data used for France.
 

 

  • Ireland had the second highest proportion of mathematics, science and technology graduates in the EU in 2012.
  • The proportion of graduates in these disciplines was 22.5 per 1,000 of the population aged 20-29 in Ireland, compared with an EU figure of 17.1.
  • The proportion of male graduates in mathematics, science and technology in Ireland, at 33 per 1,000 of the population aged 20-29, was the highest in the EU.
  • The proportion of females graduates, at 12.6 per 1,000 of the population aged 20-29, was the eighth highest in the EU.
  • The proportion of male graduates in mathematics, science and technology in Ireland grew from 31.7 per 1,000 of the population aged 20-29 in 2003 to 34.3 in 2005. It then dropped down to 23 in 2009 before increasing to 33 by 2012, (see graph).
  • The proportion of female graduates fell from 16.8 per 1,000 of the population aged 20-29 in 2003 to 10 by 2009 before increasing to 12.6 in 2012.

 

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