The need for a fundamental overhaul in the way schools are funded and the investment of additional resources in public schools is confirmed in new research released today.
The Australian Education Union said the research released today by the Review of Funding for Schooling, showed that the current arrangements are failing to ensure that every child has the opportunity to achieve a high quality education.
AEU Federal President Angelo Gavrielatos said the union agreed with the comments in the expert panel’s paper that all the evidence and research so far points to the “need for a fundamental change in the way we fund schooling at all levels of government”.
“The expert panel was also right to say the Federal Government’s existing system is viewed by many as complex and inequitable,” he said.
“This research clearly shows that the current funding model is failing schools and students and that not enough is being done to deliver the resources public schools need to lift overall performance and tackle disadvantage. Public schools educate the overwhelming majority of students with the greatest needs.
“It shows the existing funding system is deepening inequality in the provision of education and the attainment of educational outcomes rather than helping to ameliorate it.”
Mr Gavrielatos said other key findings in the research papers included:
An affiliate of the Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU) and Education International (EI)
Mr Gavrielatos said the union believed that the proposed school resource standard was worth considering but any model must take into account the existing wealth and resources of private schools.
“There are also significant questions that needed to be answered about what level that standard would be set at and what the funding responsibility for each level of government would be,” he said.
“There also needs to be an understanding of the fundamental role and responsibility of government schools. They are the only ones open to all, in every community and that must be recognised by any new funding system.
“All schools are not equal and cannot be treated as equals. As the Nous Research points out Australia’s subsidisation of the fee-charging, autonomously run independent school sector with public funds is unique within the OECD.”