Education Minister Grace Grace has called on the Federal Government not to turn its back on public schools, urging the PM not to rob Peter to pay Paul.
“The Federal Government will provide an additional $4.5 billion to the non-government sector which, according to media reports, will see non-Government schools in Queensland receive an additional $680 million,” Ms Grace said.
“While I don’t begrudge non-state schools receiving additional new funding, we want to ensure public schools receive their fair share of increased funding as well.
“Given nearly 70 per cent of Queensland students attend state schools, I cannot accept there has been no new additional funding committed for the public system.
“David Gonski himself has always proposed a needs-based funding model and Queensland supports this equitable approach.
“But needs-based funding should be sector-blind – it should apply to all schools, not just those in the Catholic and Independent sector to bring about a political fix.
“For example, the PM has promised new additional funding to non-state schools in drought-affected areas and this should also be extended to public schools in rural, remote and drought locations throughout Queensland.”
Ms Grace said she would be happy to meet with the Federal Education Minister at any time to discuss additional and any new extra funding for the state school sector.
“Of course, I’m happy to meet with Minister Tehan, but he should not come to Queensland empty-handed and expect us to sign up for a deal that provides no new additional funding for Queensland state schools,” she said.
“We will not sign up to any agreement until this inequity is addressed because we want a fair deal for all Queensland students – this funding mess is far from resolved.”