Duplication in Public Services ~ fall in output or productivity


EDUCATION

 

§         This week the ONS published its new estimate of school-level education productivity.  The ONS sought to improve the previous measure of productivity – the change in government expenditure divided by the change in the number of pupils – which had found that productivity had fallen on average by 2 per cent per year since 1998.

 

§         The ONS suggested that this basic measure should be updated as follows:

 

          It should take account of the quality of children’s education.  The best means to do this is to measure the progress of pupils at ages 7, 11, 14 and 16 (i.e. at each of the “Key Stages” of the National Curriculum).  The main alternative, to measure performance at GCSE, would only measure the performance of one year-group of pupils.

 

          It should take account of the increase in real earnings so that “weight is given to the fact that educational attainment becomes increasingly valuable in a growing and increasingly productive economy”.

 

§         When both of these changes are made, it is still the case that the productivity of state education has fallen.  It rose between 1998 and 2000 and then fell sharply.  Since 1998, on average, it has fallen by a smaller margin – about 0.5 per cent per year – than the productivity of the NHS.

 

Source: Public Service Productivity – Education, ONS, October 2005

 2. Public sector employment growth outstrips private sector

 

§         Public sector employment has been rising steadily since 1998 following twenty years of consecutive falls.  Public sector employment reached a high of 7.4 million in 1979 and fell to just over 5 million in 1998.

 

§           The latest figures from the Office for National Statistics show that public sector employment has continued to rise faster than private sector employment, and that growth has been fastest among administrators rather than frontline staff.

 

Overall public sector employment is rising over twice as fast as in the private sector

 

§         On 28 October 2005, the Office for National Statistics published updated statistics on the rise in public sector employment.  They show:

 

      Between 1998 and the second quarter of 2005, public sector employment rose from 5,166,000 to 5,846,000, an increase of 13.2 per cent. 

 

      Over that period, public sector employment rose over twice as fast as private sector employment. 

 

      The number of civil servants rose from 505,000 to 570,000, an increase of 12.9 per cent. 

 

 

PUBLIC SECTOR EMPLOYMENT HAS INCREASED OVER TWICE AS FAST AS PRIVATE SECTOR EMPLOYMENT

 

 

Public sector

Increase since 1998

Private sector

Increase since 1998

1998

5,166,000

 

21,626,000

 

1999

5,209,000

 

21,912,000

 

2000

5,290,000

 

22,242,000

 

2001

5,381,000

 

22,317,000

 

2002

5,488,000

 

22,394,000

 

2003

5,638,000

 

22,558,000

 

2004

5,751,000

 

22,651,000

 

2005 Q2

5,846,000

680,000 i.e. 13.2 per cent

22,867,000

1,241,000 i.e. 5.7 per cent

Source: Public Sector Employment Trends 2005, ONS, 28 October 2005

 

continued in the next page ……

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