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85% of private schools getting more public funding than public schools

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Private schools look to be getting the lion’s share of funding according to a report from the ABC; more than 4,400 public schools — over 70% of the sector — received less public funding than at least one similar private school in 2016.

“These findings demonstrate a deep historical inequity for school funding in Australia, which have been exacerbated recently by the Morrison government’s billion-dollar private school special funding deals,” Australian Education Union Federal President Correna Haythorpe said. 

“How can anyone look at these school funding figures and describe the current arrangements as fair? On any reckoning, they are completely unfair. Under current Morrison government funding arrangements, nearly nine in ten public schools in Australia will not have enough funding to meet the needs of each student by 2023.

“This is why nine out of ten public school teachers are spending their own money, in many cases thousands of dollars, just to ensure their public school students have basic school supplies. Something has very clearly gone wrong with how the federal government is funding public schools,” Ms Haythorpe said.

According to the report, in situations where private schools receive more public funding than similar public schools, the median gap has grown by 76% between 2009 and 2016 to $970 per student. Where public schools are ahead, the median gap has shrunk by 16 per cent, to $1,730 per student.

“The Morrison government’s approach to school funding is not based on any kind of notion of fairness. The vast majority of students attend a public school but with a funding system that does not meet their needs.”

“This story highlights the urgent need for public school funding to be brought up to 100% of the Schooling Resource Standard as soon as possible,” Ms Haythorpe said.

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