How Much and to Whom Does Free Education Cost? Human Right Based on Solidarity

Gabriele Taminskaite
Vilnius University Law Faculty / University Paris Nanterre


According to international and European Union legislation, everyone has equal rights to education at all levels, and the access to compulsory education must be free of charges for all. The commonly used wording of „free education“ leads to a widespread perception in society that education, often not only compulsory but also university education, costs nothing to anyone. The article raises the question of whether education is really free. It discusses in the legal context who actually funds education and on what basis. The article looks for the answers to the questions, what does public solidarity idea mean, what is the balance between legitimate interests of a person and the needs of the society and the state, what is the purpose of it and how to guarantee it.