Education Today Logo


Education Today Cover Browse Issue

Government schools still receiving less funding?

News Image

Some research from Save our Schools puts paid to the idea that Government and Private schools were drawing even in terms of funding.

New figures show that government funding increases continue to favour private schools over public schools. 

Total government funding (Commonwealth and state/territory) for private schools increased by $574 per student, adjusted for inflation, between 2012-13 and 2015-16. 

In the same period (which includes the first 2½ years of Gonski funding) total government funding per student increased by $324 per student in public schools. 

Over the previous three years from 2009-10 to 2012-13, total government funding for public schools was cut by $412 per student while funding for private schools increased by $592 per student.

The disparity in funding increases resulted from much larger increases for private schools than public schools by the Commonwealth and the failure of state/territory governments - the major providers for public schools – to increase their funding in any significant way since 2012-13.

The report says there are bleak prospects for increased funding for public schools under the Turnbull Government’s Gonski 2.0 funding plan. Public schools are likely to remain significantly under-funded unless state/territory governments reverse their past practice of substituting Commonwealth funding for their own and failing to increase funding above the rate of cost increases.

According to Save Our Schools, in contrast, the majority of private schools will be over-funded under the Turnbull plan and will cost the taxpayer billions of dollars over the next decade.

The report asserts that Public schools enroll 80-85% of disadvantaged students and that the failure to adequately fund public schools over the past 20 years and more has imposed a huge social cost. It has resulted in a failure to address disadvantage in education.

Shockingly, a large proportion of low SES, Indigenous and remote area students do not achieve international minimum standards in reading, mathematics and science and there are gaps of 3-4 years in learning between disadvantaged and advantaged students.

The report says that over the longer term, a new national agreement is required to target additional resources to disadvantaged public schools, remove all over-funding of private schools and integrate Commonwealth and state/territory funding. It will require a new Gonski PLUS model that builds on the principles of Gonski 1.0. 

11 Apr 2019 | National
AITSL Stakeholder Survey now open News Image

Teachers, school leaders and the entire education sector can have their say in the 2019 Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership Survey which is open now. Read More

11 Apr 2019
Early career teachers get dramatic with NIDA News Image

NIDA continues to invest in the creative practice of early career teachers in primary and secondary schools with the 2019 Creative Ambassador’s Initiative.
Read More

10 Apr 2019 | National
New teachers love induction support app News Image

Downloaded more than 17,000 times, the AITSL My Induction app offers expert advice, answers to frequently asked questions and allows new teachers to track their professional wellbeing. Read More

10 Apr 2019 | National
Reform of preschools front and centre in election period News Image

Research shows that two years of quality preschool sets a child up for success, and happily the issue is gaining traction with politicians.
Read More

10 Apr 2019 | National
Domestic violence causes homelessness News Image

The number of people seeking help from homelessness services due to domestic and family violence has risen in recent years but only 4% of those who approached a homelessness service for long-term housing actually received it. Read More