Sarah Courtney,Minister for Education
Education is the single most powerful driver for improving economic and social outcomes in Tasmania including health, life expectancy, happiness and productivity.
That’s why we have committed $7.5 billion over the forward estimates, with an additional $204 million in capital works to support teachers, students and improve education infrastructure in our schools.
And we know our Plan is working, with recently released direct Retention Data from the Department of Education’s Term 1 Census showing that the number of students progressing from Year 10 to Year 12 in 2021 has increased by almost five percentages points, to 76.1% since 2019, the highest on record.
This is the direct result of our plan to keep students in school, underpinned by our overwhelming successful policy to extend all high schools to year 12.
2021 brings the total number of Government schools which have extended to years 11 and 12 to 56. Taroona High School will complete the roll out next year.
This will mean that all high schools in Tasmania are providing access to Years 11 and 12 learning.
As part of our election commitments, we have already advertised for an additional 11.4 FTE full time school health nurses, adding to the 42.7 full-time nurses already recruited.
We have also called for expressions of interest for membership of an Expert Literacy Advisory panel to oversee the development of a community-wide framework to achieve a Literate Tasmania.
An additional $8 million will be delivered in trauma support for students in Tasmanian Government schools, taking the total to $22 million.
This will support an additional 100 children and young people who have experienced trauma, taking the total number of students this year who will receive intensive support to 256.
We will also invest $2 million over two years to roll-out professional development in trauma-informed practice.
An investment of $6.3 million will be made to gradually upgrade toilets facilities to single cubicles to make these areas safer for our students, as we know that potential bullying zones exist in and around old-style toilet blocks.
In addition, we will undertake a classroom upgrade blitz as part of our $100 million election plan to provide safe, contemporary learning facilities that welcome and inspire our learners.
We are ensuring that all children and young people in Tasmania, regardless of their circumstances, have every opportunity to pursue their ambitions.
Our clear plan for education is working, with more students staying in school, finishing school and getting jobs in an economy that continues to strengthen and provide opportunities.