Monday, 13 February 2017
At the request of Senator Collins, I move:
That the Senate—
(i) the Turnbull Government's $30 billion cut from our schools which broke an election promise to match Labor's funding plan dollar for dollar,
(ii) the refusal of the Government to fully fund year 5 and 6 of the Gonski needs-based schools funding model,
(iii) that while some schools are over-funded, many others, particularly in our most disadvantaged communities, are struggling without adequate funding,
(iv) the Prime Minister's abandoned plan to cut all federal funding from public schools, and
(v) the tearing up of agreements negotiated by the previous Labor Government that required states and territories to grow their investment in schools and improve teaching quality, literacy and numeracy; and
(b) calls on the Minister for Education and Training (Senator Birmingham) to:
(i) immediately table in the Senate the Government's plans for funding Australian schools in the coming years,
(ii) make an explanation to the Senate about how the Government intends to provide for each state and school system, and
(iii) provide clear information as to how much funding the Government intends to provide to each and every school.
School funding under the coalition is at record levels and continues to grow—from $16.1 billion in 2016 to $20.2 billion in 2020. There are no cuts. Despite total school funding doubling in real terms from 1987-88 to 2011-12 and continuing to grow in real terms at 27.1 per cent, Australia's student performance in international literacy and numeracy tests has declined. That is why the coalition government is making sure its future school funding is needs based and is conditional upon practical, evidence based classroom reforms such as early literacy and numeracy assessments and phonics teaching that help improve student results.
Question agreed to.