[Forum] Education is too important to be hijacked by politics and spin. The fact is that there are no cuts in Commonwealth school funding, in fact there are year-on-year increases.
The Coalition Government is providing record levels of funding for its part for the next 10 years. That means $18.7b this year, growing by almost a billion dollars each and every year for the next 10 years, showing Labor’s scare campaign around education funding for what it is – lies. Locally, that means a school like Wyong High School is receiving around $2.65m in Federal funding in 2018, growing to almost $3.15m in 2021, in addition to State Government funding. That’s $3,672 of Commonwealth funding for each of Wyong High’s 723 students this year, increasing annually as the school grows, meeting the changing needs of its students and teachers.
The Federal Government’s role is to work with the states to make sure that your investment, entrusted to us via income tax, goes where it’s most needed. That’s why funding grows fastest for government schools, at around 6 per cent per student each year on average, and around 4.3 per cent each year for students at nongovernment schools. Yet, we know that there is no point in producing record investment without producing better educational outcomes for Australia’s students. While a strong level of funding is important, what’s more important is how that funding is used.
That’s why the Coalition asked, David Gonski, and a panel of education experts, to make recommendations about how schools should use the record and growing funding that we’re delivering to best support our students. David Gonski was asked to build the evidence base needed to ensure that the growing investment by all governments and parents in school education is spent on initiatives that are proven to provide better outcomes. The Coalition Government broadly supports the Gonski recommendations and is working with the states, territories and different education sectors on how they can work in practice to boost outcomes for our students.
Letter, Sep 5 Arthur Sinodinos AO, NSW Senator