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Ballarat school community calls for needs-based funding for local kids

Oct 27, 2015Media Releases

Local Ballarat school Phoenix P-12 College is hosting an event tomorrow as part of national Gonski Week to remind our political decision-makers why Victorian children deserve the full six years of Gonski needs-based funding.

AEU Victorian Branch President, Meredith Peace said Victorian students continue to be left behind as the lowest funded students, on average in Australia, with the impact particularly felt by regional students.

“Every child, no matter what their background deserves a high quality education. Victorian public schools have suffered chronic underinvestment for over a decade. Victorian students from low socio- economic backgrounds are falling through the cracks.

“National Gonski Week highlights the need for governments to invest in schools based on student need to give every student opportunity for a high quality education – regardless of their ability to pay, or where they live.

“The Federal Government back flipped on its commitment to deliver Gonski needs-based funding through to 2019. Now schools in Ballarat and across the country are left wondering how student programs will be delivered beyond 2017.

“Unless Prime Minister Turnbull delivers on the education funding promise, Victorian students will miss out on $1 billion of additional funding over 2018 and 2019. Schools in the region need long-term funding certainty. We cannot continue to plan programs year by year.

“The Gonski Review found we are holding our children back by under-investing in education. The most affected are the most vulnerable and disadvantaged students, along with those with disabilities and special needs,” said Ms Peace.

Ms Peace said the Federal Government needs to do more to support and promote public education in Australia.

“Victorians believe in public education and believe in our children’s right to succeed at school. We hope Mr Turnbull recognises the importance of public education to the futures of young Victorians.

“Without Gonski needs-based funding, Victorian schools and their students will be left behind,” said Ms Peace.

The event will be held at 10.45am at Phoenix P-12 College in Ballarat and it will be attended by the Federal Leader of the Opposition, Bill Shorten and Federal Member for Ballarat, Catherine King.

WHAT Gonski Week event promoting needs-based funding in Ballarat WHO • AEU Victorian Branch President, Meredith Peace

• Local teachers available for comment
• Federal Leader of the Opposition, Bill Shorten • Federal Ballarat MP, Catherine King

WHERE Phoenix P-12 College, Hertford Street, Sebastopol WHEN Tuesday, 27 October
TIME 10.45am