Education in Haiti

…education is the single most important determinant of an individual’s potential to escape poverty in Haiti. The non-state sector has been crucial in making this progress despite formidable economic and political constraints. The Haitian state’s role in primary education is uniquely low from a global perspective. Of the world’s poorest countries, Haiti is the only one in which more than 50 percent of children are enrolled in non-state schools. The country has a total of 14,424 private schools and 1,240 public schools. Non-state schools therefore comprise 92 percent of all schools, the vast majority of which do not receive public subsidies. Some 82 percent of all primary and secondary school students attend private, fee-based schools…Public schools are mainly in urban areas.

The source document is here.  People, how do you interpret those figures?  I see a few possible takes:

1. Private sector education works well, because they are high returns to receiving it.  The problem is on the demand side.

2. Private sector education doesn't work well, because it is prevalent and yet most of the country is not well-educated.

3. Haiti is a mess, in part, because education isn't much subsidized by the state.

4. Whatever causes a weak interest in publicly subsidized schooling also makes private education less than effective.

5. Private education doesn't work well at low levels of income, especially when educational expenditures compete against spending on survival.

6. Private education maybe doesn't actually bring such high returns, once you adjust for unobserved heterogeneity.

What do you think?


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