Wednesday, 4 March 2020
Australian Education Amendment (Direct Measure of Income) Bill 2020; Second Reading
I rise to speak in favour of the Australian Education Amendment (Direct Measure of Income) Bill 2020. An excellent education system is vitally important to Australia. At a macro level, it's vital economically, socially, for adaptation into the future and for cohesiveness as a nation. At an individual level, obviously education provides people with an opportunity to learn, to develop knowledge, to develop skills, to develop understanding and to rise to their potential.
This government strongly supports the rights of parents to choose the best school for their child. To enable this, we need to have strong and vibrant public and private systems—systems which allow for a diversity of schools to flourish. We also need to ensure that the choice is an affordable one. To that end, funding must be provided for each and every child, regardless of the school system their parents choose.
(Quorum formed) Before I commence again, I want to note that it is wonderful to once again see school students in the public gallery. To all the school students up there: I ask you to ask the parliamentary education officer who is with you to explain the quorum-calling game that is currently being played.
To pick up where I left off, within the context of the vitality of having an excellent education system, I do want to note—and it is not directly relevant to this bill, but it is relevant to education—the government is providing a record $314 billion investment in recurrent funding for schools from 2018 to 2029. It will grow from $21 billion this year to $32 billion in 2029. There is record funding for all schools—