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Inquiry slams Abbott over broken Gonski promises

Media Release
Penny Wright 9 Jul 2014

Tony Abbott's broken promises on the Gonski school funding agreements will disadvantage every Australian student, a Senate Inquiry has found.

Australian Greens spokesperson on schools and deputy chair of the Senate Select Committee into Schools Funding Senator Penny Wright said the committee recommended the Government re-introduce the fifth and sixth years of funding to address inequality across Australian schools.

"Despite all of Tony Abbott's election promises, every school is going to be worse off," Senator Wright said.

"The Government changes to indexation mean all schools are facing funding cuts in real terms once the four-year deal is done.

"The idea of Gonksi was that at the end of six years, every school would be up to standard and every student would receive a high quality education.

"Now thousands upon thousands of Australian children will miss out because their school will remain below standard.

"We can no longer tolerate a society where your chance of success at school has more to do with family wealth than talent and hard work.

"The Greens know the previous government made some mistakes in the transition, but that's no excuse for the Abbott Government to abandon Australia's first genuine needs-based funding system.

"The Abbott Government's cuts to school funding will entrench privilege in education. It shows our students and the world that this Government is indifferent to improving the quality of education for every Australian child."

The Senate Select Committee into Schools Funding also:

  • Found the Abbott Government had failed to keep an election promise to deliver increased funding for students with a disability
  • Recommended the Government establish co-contribution arrangements with non-participating states

The full report of the committee can be found here.

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