Govt announces new national school funding plan

Govt announces new national school funding plan
The Federal Government has announced that it will introduce “real needs-based funding” by committing an additional $18.6bn for Australia’s schools over the next decade starting from 2018.

In a statement today, Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull and Federal Education Minister, Simon Birmingham, said Commonwealth funding for Australian schools will grow from a record $17.5bn in 2017 to $30.6bn in 2027. 

This includes more than $2.2bn in new funding over the first four years to be included in this year’s Budget following on from an additional $1.2bn in last year’s Budget.

David Gonski has agreed to lead a new review into school funding along with Dr Ken Boston, who was also a member of the original Gonski Review.

“This bold plan will transform Australian schools. It will set Australian students on the path to academic excellence and achieve real needs-based funding for students from all backgrounds, in every town and city, in every region and state, in every classroom,” the statement, released today, read. 

“National and international reports have shown declining performance in Australia’s education system, despite record increases in funding. We cannot accept increased investment and declining results. We must focus on quality to improve education outcomes for all Australian students.”

However, Australian Education Union (AEU) Victoria president, Meredith Peace, said the latest development failed to provide any certainty as to how schools will be funded next year.

“We still do not know how schools will be funded next year. All we have is another review and a promise for a funding increase over 10 years,” Peace said in a statement today.

“There is already a plan to lift all schools to the minimum resource standard – they are the six year Gonski agreements signed with states in 2013, and Malcolm Turnbull needs to honour them.”