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New inquiry gives voice to parents and teachers on Abbott's broken Gonski promises

Media Release
Penny Wright 12 Dec 2013

The Abbott Government's broken promises and mismanagement of the Gonski school funding model will be examined by a special senate committee established today.

Australian Greens spokesperson for Schools Senator Penny Wright encouraged parents, teachers and schools to make submissions.

"If Mr Pyne and Mr Abbott won't do their homework, we'll do it for them before they have the opportunity to tear down the best chance our kids have had to get a world-class education," Senator Wright said.

 "This is the chance for everyone who is passionate about quality education in Australia to have their voices heard.

"The Abbott Government's broken promises on Gonski have created a huge amount of anger among parents and considerable uncertainty among schools.

"Australia needs a more equitable school funding system for our future economic prosperity and so every child gets the chance to reach their potential.

 "In this committee, we'll also be trying to get to the bottom of the Abbott government's secrecy about what they are planning for our schools.

"The Australian Greens believe every child in Australia deserves a high quality - no matter where they live or their social background. We are pleased to support this inquiry will look at the how we can meet the needs of all schools and students."


Terms of reference for the Senate Select Committe on School Funding

(a) the implementation of needs-based funding arrangements, from 1 January 2014, for all schools and school systems, including:

(i) Commonwealth funding, methods for the distribution of funds, funding arrangements and agreements with states and territories, as well as related accountability and transparency measures,

(ii) funding arrangements for individual schools,

(iii) the extent to which schools can anticipate their total future funding and links to educational programs in future years,

(iv) the consequential equity of educational opportunity between states and territories, schools and students,

(v) progress towards the Schooling Resource Standard, and

(vi) the implementation of schools reforms,

(b) how funding arrangements will meet the needs of all schools and individual students, including Indigenous students, students with disability, small schools, remote schools, students with limited English, and students from socially and economically disadvantaged backgrounds;

(c) the Government's proposed changes to the Australian Education Act 2013, related legislative instruments and their consequences;

(d) the economic impacts of school education policy;

(e) the Government's consideration of expert findings, research, public consultation and reports in the development and implementation of school policy, including the selection of experts to provide advice on education policy; and

(f) any related matters.

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