Sweden: The boom in private schooling

"Kunskapsskolan" is Sweden's largest non-governmental school organisation. The company operates 30 private schools, employing 700 teachers in charge of 10,000 students. Classes are small, and pupils are given plenty of individual attention. Teacher performance is monitored regularly and the best receive bonuses, while students negotiate their own timetable each week. The director of the "Kunskapsskolan" chain likes to compare it to IKEA. If it doesn't don't perform well, then it doesn't make a profit, he says.

These free schools, however, are forced to have an identical curriculum to the state school so that to all intents and purposes they are not really "free".