More than a thousand QLD state schools displayed in Bonner in fight against school funding cuts

30 April 2019

State schools have taken over the seat of Bonner today to highlight the importance of reversing the Morrison Government’s $647 million in state school funding cuts in Queensland.

More than a thousand Queensland ‘state schools’ were planted in a spectacular display at Darling Point Special School in Manly as part of the Fair Funding Now! campaign to win fair funding for state schools.

Today’s event also marks the launch of the Fair Funding Now! mobile billboards campaign in Dickson, Bonner, Forde and Petrie. These mobile billboards will travel around the electorates, informing voters and the community of the importance of securing fair funding for local state schools.

Australian Education Union (AEU) Federal President Correna Haythorpe said that voters in Queensland were frustrated that the Morrison Government had cut funding for state schools.

“We have a very clear message from parents, teachers and voters about their disappointment over the Morrison Government’s decision to cut $647 million from funding for state schools in Queensland,” Ms Haythorpe said.

“After six years of funding cuts we know that the Federal Coalition does not support state schools. Mr Morrison’s plan will leave 100% per cent of state schools in Queensland below the national resource standard.”

“This means that every state school in Queensland will not have enough funding to meet the needs of its students for the next five years and beyond. That’s Scott Morrison’s idea of a fair go,” Ms Haythorpe said.

“Today we have demonstrated the impact of Scott Morrison’s state school funding cuts with our field of Fair Funding Now! schools in Bonner. This is a visual representation of every state school in Queensland planted in the middle of Brisbane,” Ms Haythorpe said.

“Each school signifies a real public school in our community and the extra funding it stands to receive under Labor’s commitment for an extra $647 million for state schools in Queensland in the first three years of a Shorten Labor government.”

“This additional funding, under Labor, is critically important for our schools and will provide for smaller class sizes, more one-on-one support and more help for students with disability,” Ms Haythorpe said.

“We also welcome the commitment of the Australian Greens to Fair Funding Now for all state schools.”

The AEU has also launched a national advertising campaign reminding voters about the failure of the Morrison Government to fairly fund public schools. This national campaign will run across television, radio, newspapers, online and social media as well as billboards in the lead up to the federal election.

Today’s event will see the Fair Funding Now! mobile billboards travelling around Dickson, Forde, Bonner and Petrie, informing voters and the community of the importance of securing fair funding for local state schools.

Queensland Teachers’ Union President Kevin Bates said that, according to recent polling done in Dickson, an overwhelming number of voters have said that state school funding will be an important or very important issue for them when deciding how to vote.

“Two thirds of voters polled in Dickson, including more than half of all Liberal voters, said a much greater investment in local public schools was a better use of federal funding than tax cuts for high income earners,” Mr Bates said.

“This is a clear rejection by the electorate of the Morrison Government’s cuts to state school funding.”

“By contrast, state schools in Dickson would receive an extra $16,660,000 in funding in the first three years of a Shorten Labor Government,” Mr Bates said.

“The message from voters is clear. It is time for a change of government, one that is serious about investing in our state schools.”

NOTE: The AEU’s national advertisement can be viewed here.