Fair Funding For Schools

Scott Morrison has turned his back on every public school parent and child in Australia by locking in massive cuts to public schools. While Scott Morrison has gone some way towards fixing the mess for Catholic and independent schools, he hasn’t given public schools a dollar extra – he has confirmed that he thinks the schools that have the greatest need deserve the least hope.

Labor is fully committed to fair funding for public schools. In government, Labor will restore every dollar of the $17 billion the Liberals have cut from schools. The Government’s cuts hit public schools hardest, with 86 per cent of cuts falling on public schools.

Under Labor the neediest schools will get the biggest funding increases in the fastest time. Most of the neediest schools are public schools, which will be many billions of dollars better off as we restore the whole of the $17 billion funding cut over ten years

Every child, regardless of where they live, should have the option to attend a great public school where they can make strong progress each and every year. Our public schools are among our nation’s most important institutions. One of the most fundamental responsibilities of any government should be to ensure public schools are fairly funded to deliver quality education.

Labor will properly fund all our schools based on need, so every Australian child, in every school, gets a great education.

Labor stands with parents, teachers, public school communities and unions who are fighting the Morrison Government’s cuts to school funding.

Of course it's not all about money; it's about what we do with that money in our schools that counts.

An incoming Labor government will establish a new education research institute to improve classroom standards and better inform the use of government funding across Australian schools.

Labor will work with parents, teachers and principals to help arm them with the best and latest evidence around student growth and achievement, so teachers will be supported to exercise their professional judgement about how to best help their students.

We want to raise the status of the teaching profession and better support principals. That means giving teachers and school leaders the time and resources to be life-long learners, continually evaluating the evidence and adopting the practices that work best for the children in their classrooms.

Labor wants more teachers in our schools, who are better supported to give more individual attention to every student.

We want schools that can provide additional help with the basics like reading, writing, maths, science, and computer skills, especially when kids fall behind. 

We want to challenge children who are gifted to fully realise their potential.

The government’s schools policy is not needs-based, it is not sector-blind and it is certainly not fair. The government is providing just 20 per cent of the Schooling Resource Standard (SRS) to public schools. Non-government schools will receive 80 per cent of their SRS from the government.

Under this approach, 87 per cent of public schools will never reach their fair level of funding, yet two thirds of private schools will be funded over the SRS.

Labor wants a fair funding model to assist students with additional needs. Important reforms to support students with disability were just beginning when Labor left government in 2013. Since then, the Government has cut funding for students with a disability in five states. This includes a 46 per cent cut to funding in Tasmania and a 36 per cent cut in the Northern Territory this year. 

Labor will work closely with parents, carers, teachers, principals and the states and territories to ensure funding for a truly inclusive education system for students with a disability.

Labor has a proud history of providing capital funding for public schools. When we were last in government, Labor invested $14.7 billion in schools through Building the Education Revolution. The BER program built school facilities including school halls, classrooms, libraries and science centres, and addressed the maintenance backlog in public schools. This supported 24,000 projects in 9,500 schools. In addition, Labor in government funded over 500 Trades Training Centres and installed 967,000 computers in Australian schools.

Labor is the party of public education and we are committed to more funding for better public schools, better results, and better support for our great teachers and school leaders.