Independent research confirms need for Gonski to overcome inequities in schools funding

16 February 2016

New research by State of Our Schools shows that school funding increases prior to the Gonski reforms had been inequitably skewed away from disadvantaged schools, the AEU said today.

AEU Federal President Correna Haythorpe said the research was further confirmation of the importance of needs-based Gonski funding to address inequities which had seen resourcing of disadvantaged schools fall behind.

“Save our Schools found that over the 15 years leading up to 2013/14, combined government funding per student rose by 17 per cent in real terms for public schools compared with 39 per cent for private schools.

“From 2009/10 to 2013/14 government per student funding to public schools actually fell by 3 per cent in real terms while private school funding rose by 10 per cent.

“The research shows that during this period total government funding for many exclusive private schools increased by far more than that received by disadvantaged public schools.

“It is clear that the pre-Gonski funding system was a mess which was not directing funds where they were most needed – to the schools which educate our most disadvantaged students.

“Gonski funding is starting to turn around this inequity and is delivering improved results in schools which are receiving funding directly.

“But we need Malcolm Turnbull to deliver the full six years of extra funding the Gonski Review recommended to reverse the inequities of the previous system and ensure that all schools meet the minimum resources standard they need to give all their students a quality education.

“Every child that needs help at school should be able to get it.

“The Turnbull Government wants to scrap Gonski despite the evidence of the success of the funding arrangements, and strip $4.5 billion out of schools.

“It is pushing an alternative funding model which would see an end to needs-based funding after 2017, with funding increases linked solely to inflation, and which could see funding to some States cut.

“It is vital that the final two years of Gonski funding are delivered in full if all children are to get the education they deserve.”

Media Contact: Ben Ruse 0437 971 291