"When the rich are in charge"
I found this article very illuminating: http://www.voxeu.org/index.php?q=node/559
Croix and Doepke point out that 28% of all education funding comes from private resources, as compared to Norway's 1.5%. What this means is that Americans are spending over 1/4 as much on private schools than the total education budget for public schools. A bit worrysome. Croix and Doepke's conclusiong is especially poignant:
"Ultimately, school funding decisions are made by politicians. An education system with a large share of private schooling can work well in a democracy where politicians are responsive to the needs of families using public schools, but can lead to disastrous results in a plutocracy. Thus, education policies should be analysed jointly with the political system that determines education funding, and policy advice on education systems needs to be conditional on the political setup and the level of democracy of a country."