EUR 6.8 billion budget proposal for Ministry of Education and Culture for 2020
A budget of EUR 6.8 billion is proposed for the Ministry of Education and Culture’s administrative branch for 2020. The draft budget measures seek to increase the skills level in Finland, make education more equitable, improve the quality of education and enhance the wellbeing of children and young people. Financing for the arts and culture will support creative work and production and promote equal access to the arts and culture. Financing allocated to physical activity and young people aims to promote an active lifestyle and increase wellbeing and health.
Funding for increasing quality and equality of early childhood and comprehensive school education
The Government will launch projects to make early childhood education and care (ECEC) and comprehensive school education more equitable and improve their quality, with the aim of improving children and young people’s learning outcomes and tackling inequality. Between 2020 and 2022, EUR 125 million will be reserved in ECEC and EUR 180 million in comprehensive school education for a quality and equality programme.
The purpose of the ECEC programme is to make early childhood education and care more equitable and tackle growing inequality. The programme will also develop a model of three-tier support, extend the pilot of free part-time early childhood education and care for 5-year-olds and pilot a two-year preschool.
The objective of the quality and equality programme for comprehensive school education is to strengthen educational equality, tackle growing inequality, support the teaching profession and improve the quality of comprehensive school education. The aim of the project is to address problems such as a growing divergence in learning outcomes, and to strengthen learning support, improve the quality of education and support flexible and individual transitions in the early years. The programme period for both projects will be three years.
The subjective right to early childhood education and care will be restored. The amendment to the Act on Early Childhood Education and Care will be prepared as an act related to the 2020 budget proposal. The amendment would enter into force on 1 August in 2020. Restoring the subjective right to early childhood education and care will increase the central government transfers to municipalities by EUR 7.1 million in 2020 and then by EUR 17 million per year.
The adult to child ratio in early childhood education and care will be revised. The staffing level will be seven children aged 3 to 5 per educator instead of the current eight. This change will increase the central government transfers to municipalities by EUR 6.7 million in 2020 and then by EUR 16 million per year.
The Government is preparing to increase the funding for before-school and after-school activities and for leisure activities offered in connection with the school day by EUR 14.5 million from 2021 onwards. In addition, to foster opportunities for recreational activities free of charge in connection with the school day, a sum of EUR 5 million is proposed for 2020 with a view to creating an Icelandic model in Finland.
Preparations will be made for extending compulsory education from 2021
Compulsory education will be extended to the upper secondary level and the minimum school leaving age to 18 years. This will coincide with the implementation of the plans to provide upper secondary education free of charge. The reform is due to enter into force in 2021. EUR 22 million will be reserved in 2021, EUR 65 million in 2022 and EUR 107 million in 2023 for extending compulsory education and for making upper secondary education free of charge for students.
EUR 10 million will be allocated in 2021, EUR 20 million in 2022 and EUR 29 million in 2023 to improve student welfare in comprehensive school education and upper secondary education.
The unit price per student in general upper secondary education will be increased by EUR 18 million, of which the central government transfer will amount to EUR 7.5 million and the municipalities’ self-financing proportion EUR 10.5 million.
In the 2020 central government transfers, EUR 5 million of extra funding will be reserved for the education of adults with a low level of basic skills in liberal adult education institutions. The purpose of this additional funding is to promote continuous learning.
Additional investment in the recruitment of teachers and instructors and in the support measures for vocational education and training
An increase of EUR 80 million is proposed for the teaching and instruction in vocational education and training. The additional appropriation may be used to recruit new teachers and instructors and to increase the number of teaching hours for existing untenured teachers and to recruit teaching support staff. The increase can also be used for provide support measures for teaching and instruction, such as for the development of learning environments and pedagogical approaches.
From 2020 onwards, extra EUR 2.5 million will be allocated to increasing and developing workplace instructor training. Similarly from 2020, additional EUR 0.5 million will be allocated to supporting vocational education and training for athletes so that young people engaging in performance sports will have the opportunity to study in vocational and general upper secondary education equally.
Increased core financing for higher education and research
From 2020 onwards, the core financing for universities will be increased by EUR 40 million and the core financing for universities of applied sciences by EUR 20 million. In addition, the accounting for higher costs will increase the core financing of universities by EUR 41.6 million and the core financing of universities of applied sciences by EUR 20.3 million.
The Academy of Finland will have a research budget authority of EUR 337 million. The international competitiveness and attractiveness of the research and science community will be reinforced by investment in research environments and infrastructure. Finland has made preparations to host one of the supercomputers of the European High-Performance Computing Joint Undertaking (EuroHPC). In 2019–2026, Finland’s financial contribution will amount to EUR 48 million, half of which will be financed from the administrative branch of the Ministry of Education and Culture.
Extensive utilisation and openness of research materials, research results and expertise will be promoted. The development programme for data-driven research will be continued. During the budget planning period, EUR 1.5 million per year will be allocated to the digitising of materials. An overall increase will be allocated to covering the operating expenses of the National Archives. The increase will amount to EUR 1.5 million for 2020, EUR 1.4 million for 2021 and EUR 1 million from 2022 onwards.
Increase in financial aid to students
EUR 618 million is proposed for student financial aid, which is approximately EUR 31 million more than in the previous year’s Budget. Most of the increase is explained by the rise in student loan compensation expenditure (EUR 25 million). In accordance with the Government Programme, the family provider supplement to the study grant will be increased by EUR 25 from the beginning of 2020. The amounts of study grants will be tied to the National Pension Index from August 2020 onwards, which means an increase of about one per cent in financing.
Reforming the system of central government transfers to the arts and financing the renovation of the Finnish National Theatre
In order to improve the conditions for the arts and culture, a new funding system for museums will be introduced and funding for independent professionals in the field of performing arts will be reformed. An increase of EUR 3 million in 2020 and EUR 3.5 million in 2021 is proposed for the funding for independent professionals in the field of performing arts. In 2022, the reform of the financing system will be extended to cover central government transfers to the performing arts. EUR 10 million has been reserved for the implementation of the reform in 2022 and EUR 13 million in 2023.
EUR 50 million is proposed for the renovation of the National Theatre during the budget planning period, of which EUR 20 million will be allocated for 2020. For the renovation, EUR 40 million will be allocated from the proceeds from gambling.
Cultural services will be developed, for example by proposing a total of EUR 4 million for 2020 and 2021 to boost cultural tourism (including the World Heritage Sites). In addition, digital accessibility and long-term preservation of cultural heritage material will be improved.
In basic art education, an increase of EUR 2 million is proposed to eliminating regional disparities and closing the gaps between the art fields. In addition, EUR 7 million is proposed for 2020–2023 to support cultural activities for children.
The proposed increase in the level of artist grants is EUR 1.4 million in 2020 and 2021 and EUR 1.8 million in 2022 and 2023.
In 2020 and 2021, the appropriation for compensating for the reproduction of works for private use will remain at the 2019 level at EUR 11 million.
Financing allocated to physical activity and young people to promote an active lifestyle and increase wellbeing and health
The appropriations allocated to the measures proposed in the Report on Sports Policy are EUR 4.8 million in 2020, EUR 6.2 million in 2021, EUR 4.5 million, EUR 2022 and EUR 4.5 million in 2023. In addition, EUR 6 million is proposed for extending the cross-administrative physical activity programme and the Finnish Schools on the Move programme.
Efforts will be made to increase the inclusion and physical activity of children and young people by allocating extra EUR 1.5 million to low-threshold club sports. Funding for elite sports will be increased.
Additional financing of EUR 2 million will be reserved for preparing the strategy for the recreational use of nature and the measures proposed in the strategy. This appropriation will be allocated, for example, to the construction of trails.
The aims of youth work include supporting young people’s inclusion and life management skills and their equal opportunities for having accessible leisure activities. Additional financing of EUR 1.2 million will be allocated to developing a national digital system to facilitate the transfer of data to outreach youth work.
Workshop activities for young people will be improved with an additional annual appropriation of EUR 2 million.
Other changes to the budget proposal
The index increases based on higher cost levels will be implemented in full in the central government transfers to educational and cultural services and in the core financing of higher education institutions.
EUR 6.2 million of the reduction in deferrable appropriation items, implemented in accordance with the Government Programme, will be targeted at the Ministry of Education and Culture’s main title of expenditure. The Ministry of Education and Culture proposes that, for 2020, the reduction should be targeted on a one-off basis at the deferrable appropriations in the central government's general education item. The reduction will have no impact on the amount of financing for state-owned educational institutions.
A total of 62 per cent of the arts, culture, sports and youth work expenditure and 21 per cent of science expenditure will be financed from the proceeds from gambling. In 2020, the Ministry of Education and Culture’s share of the proceeds from gambling should amount to approximately EUR 568 million.
Pasi Rentola, Director of Financial Affairs (general financial planning), tel. +358 295 3 30211
Anita Lehikoinen, Permanent Secretary, tel. +358 295 3 30182
Eeva-Riitta Pirhonen, Director General (general education, early childhood education and care, liberal adult education), tel. +358 2953 30316
Mika Tammilehto, Director General (vocational education and training), tel. +358 295 3 30308
Tapio Kosunen, Director General (higher education and science), tel. +358 295 3 30440
Riitta Kaivosoja, Director General (culture and arts policy), tel. +358 295 3 30129
Esko Ranto, Director General (youth and sport policy), tel. +358 295 3 30115
Virpi Hiltunen, Senior Ministerial Adviser (student financial aid), tel. +358 295 3 30110
Government proposals related to the budget proposal:
- Act on Early Childhood Education and Care
- Act on Central Government Transfers to Local Government for Basic Public Services
- Act on the Financing of Educational and Cultural Provision
- Act on Financial Aid for Students
The contents of government proposals are published on the Decisions page
Previous press releases in english: Minister of Education Andersson and Minister of Science and Culture Kosonen: Government invests in knowledge and education 17 September 2019