Regulatory framework conditions of the governing of special education offerings in Swiss primary schools (RaShA)

Category Project

Ausgangslage und Ziele

With the federalist organization of the education system in Switzerland, there are great differences between the cantons and municipalities in their legal bases regarding the organization, financing, and quality assurance of special education measures in the primary schools. These differences in the education system hamper coordination and control. And there is no clear comparative overview available. The aim of this research project was to compare the regulatory framework conditions of the governing of special education offerings in Switzerland.

Project Management

Monika Wicki Title Prof. Dr. phil.


Professorin für Special Needs Educational Governance


  • Duration
  • Neue Projektnummer

Methodical approach

The cantonal regulatory framework conditions (laws, ordinances, and guidelines) for governing special education measures in primary schools in 19 cantons in the German-speaking part of Switzerland were compiled from the cantons’ websites and summarized regarding the naming of the offerings, the financing mechanisms, and the quality assurance mechanisms. For each canton a fact sheet was created. The offerings and the financing mechanisms were then described.


In laws, ordinances, and guidelines, the cantons have largely taken over the provisions of the Sonderpädagogik-Konkordat (an inter-cantonal agreement concerning special education). Still, there are different names/terms and different offerings for both the ordinary measures and the enhanced individual measures. To finance special education offerings, both input funding and throughput funding mechanisms are used today. With the established funding mechanisms also the advantages and disadvantages of the different forms of financing become manifest in the system. For the organization and governing of special education offerings in Switzerland, there is therefore a need to find the best possible form of funding mechanisms. However, it is not possible to conclusively assess what cantons are already using an optimal mix of input and throughout funding mechanisms. This is also because the effectiveness of the measures and financing mechanisms has not been examined regarding increased performance or participation of the students.


Financial support