Boothby voters aren’t fooled by Nicolle Flint’s advertising about public school funding

23 April 2019

New polling has shown that voters in Boothby haven’t been fooled by the Morrison Government’s attempts to disguise its $14 billion in public school funding cuts as evidence of record school funding.

The Morrison Government cuts would see $256 million cut from public schools in South Australia over the next three years.

However, according to the polling, an overwhelming majority of voters in Boothby indicated that public school funding would be an important or very important issue for them when deciding how to vote.

More than two thirds of voters polled in Boothby, including more than 45% 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.

The poll of more than 670 voters was conducted last week.

Australian Education Union South Australia Branch President Howard Spreadbury said voters polled overwhelmingly support a greater investment in public schools rather than tax cuts for high income earners as proposed by the Morrison Government.

“The Morrison Government’s plan to cut $256 million from public schools in South Australia while delivering big tax cuts to high income earners is the opposite to what the public wants,” Mr Spreadbury said.

“Boothby voters want to see children in public schools in Ascot Park, Eden Hills and surrounding suburbs put first, not unaffordable tax cuts that will lead to $40 billion in government spending cuts every year just to pay for them.”

The polling shows:

  • 80% of voters in Boothby say proper funding of public schools is important to them, including 68% of Liberal supporters
  • 56% of all voters in Boothby want to prioritise funding for public schools over extra funding for private schools.
  • 69% of all voters in Boothby (including 45% of Liberals, 72% of other/independent voters and 74% of undecideds) would prefer much greater investment in public schools over tax cuts for those on high incomes
  • 44% of voters in Boothby say the $4.6 billion to private schools makes them less likely to vote Liberal.

38.2% of other/independent voters and 42% of undecided voters in Boothby are less likely to vote for Liberal candidate Nicolle Flint after hearing about the Coalition’s $4.6 billion in extra funding for private schools

“The Federal Coalition’s record on education and public schools is a poor one,” Mr Spreadbury said.

“First Tony Abbott tried to cut $30 billion from schools, and then Malcolm Turnbull and Scott Morrison reduced that to a $14 billion cut for public schools across Australia.”

“That meant schools across Boothby have received less funding for high-needs students, such as those with a disability and those from disadvantaged backgrounds,” Mr Spreadbury said.

“By contrast, public schools in Boothby would receive an extra $20,910,000 in funding in the first three years of a Shorten Labor Government.”

Mr Spreadbury said there was a clear choice for voters in Boothby who care about public schools and students, with Labor pledging to reverse all Scott Morrison’s $14 billion in school cuts.

“Public schools in Boothby deserve better,” Mr Spreadbury said.