Country information for Bulgaria - Financing of inclusive education systems
According to the Law on Pre-school and School Education, activities in the pre-school and school education system are currently financed by the state budget, municipal budgets, European funds and programmes and other sources.
The funds, which are an object of state policy, are financed in full or in part with funds from the state budget.
The funds from the state budget are for:
- maintenance of the activities for learners’ education and training;
- support for equal access and personal development;
- development of kindergartens, schools and personal development support centres;
- implementation of national programmes to develop education.
The funds from the state budget for financing activities in the pre-school and school education system are planned annually. The amount, as a percentage of the gross domestic product, must not be not lower than the amount set in the state budget for the previous year.
The funds are distributed between the budgets of the first-instance budget managers, financing state and municipal schools and kindergartens, based on:
- the number of learners;
- the number of groups and classes;
- the type and number of educational institutions;
- standards for learners;
- standards for groups and classes;
- standards for educational institutions.
The activities, which are financed entirely or partially from the state budget by standards, are determined by the state educational standard for the financing of the institutions.
The amounts of the standards are determined by a Council of Ministers act. The amounts of the standards are determined based on:
- the content of the activities for the learners’ education and training;
- the type and specifics of the school or kindergarten;
- the form of training;
- the professional direction of the training;
- geographical and demographic characteristics of the settlement, the municipality and the region in which the educational institution is located, leading to the differences in the costs needed to ensure equal access to education;
- the need for pedagogical specialists to implement activities for the learners’ education and training.
At least two thirds of the funds are distributed between the budgets of the first-instance budget managers, based on the number of learners and an expenditure standard for learners.
Means to support equal access and support personal development include:
- transport for learners;
- purchase of cognitive books, textbooks and study sets for free use and for the school library;
- all-day organisation of school and meals;
- activities related to general support for personal development;
- activities related to additional support for personal development;
- activities related to learner recreation and sports;
- implementation of school programmes to prevent school drop-out and reduce the number of early school leavers;
- support for gifted learners;
- support for the payment of the fees due by parents for feeding children in compulsory pre-school, outside the one financed by the state;
- compensation of expenses for the upbringing and education of children who cannot attend due to a lack of places in state and municipal pre-school education in kindergartens and schools;
- other activities which help to increase the scope of and equal access to education.
For children of compulsory pre-school age and for learners from settlements where there is no kindergarten or school, the state budget must fund transport to and from the nearest suitable kindergarten or school. Funds from the state budget for transport are also provided for learners who travel daily to vocational training schools in another settlement in the same or in a neighbouring administrative-territorial area.
Funds for resource support for learners with special educational needs are also provided to private kindergartens and schools.
Funds for implementing resource support for learners with special educational needs are provided to the kindergartens and schools in which they are educated.
When kindergartens or schools cannot provide resource support according to the state educational standard for the inclusive education, the funds under para. 4 are provided to the respective municipality. The municipality organises the resource support in personal development support centres, in centres for special educational support in the respective municipality, or for assignment under the conditions and by the order of art. 198 of the Law on Pre-school and School Education.
When the municipality cannot provide resource support according to the state educational standard for inclusive education, the funds for implementing resource support are provided to the respective regional centre for support of inclusive education.
The funds for implementing activities related to general and additional support for personal development may sometimes be provided to children’s social services, licensed by order of the social services law.
Last updated 02/03/2021