Turnbull Government Plans To Slash Education Funding

22 September 2016

Victorian students will be worse off under the Turnbull Government’s plans to slash education funding.

Federal Education Minister Simon Birmingham today flagged through the media his intention to cut funding that supports the most disadvantaged schools and students.

Mr Birmingham has provided no report or formal offer for the states to consider, and is instead only offering a verbal briefing on education funding at tomorrow’s Education Council meeting.

This is the Turnbull Government treating every Australian school, student and their families with contempt.

Mr Birmingham has accused the states of cutting education funding and relying on the Federal Government to pick up the slack, but the Productivity Commission report he is using to make this case only contains cuts to education spending in Victoria that occurred under the previous Liberal Government.

When the Turnbull Government handed down this year’s Federal Budget, it walked away from funding the final two years of the Gonski Agreement – leaving Victorian students almost $1 billion a year worse off every year from 2018.

At the time, Mr Birmingham said a sustainable education funding policy would be in place by early 2017.

With only three months of the year remaining, the Turnbull Government has no formal policy and only an inadequate amount of funding on the table provided by an increase to indexation.

It is a broken promise to Victorian schools which, like performance pay for teachers, the Andrews Labor Government will not support – because the evidence shows it just doesn’t work.

Quotes attributable to the Acting Minister for Education Jenny Mikakos

“Victorian students will be almost $1 billion a year worse off because of the Turnbull Government’s decision to walk away from funding the final years of the Gonski agreement.”

“Mr Birmingham is treating Australian schools, students and their families with contempt – and we’ll be fighting to make sure Victorian students get their fair share of funding.”

Reviewed 19 August 2020

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