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School’s out on SES funding

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There has been a lot of concern around the rethinking of SES scores but the government is keen to stress that the process is in its early stages.

Minister for Education, Simon Birmingham said that he will consult with the non-government school sectors and with state and territory governments before the government responds formally to the report of the National School Resourcing Board (NSRB) on SES score methodology.

“The NSRB has undertaken a thorough review of the SES score methodology that is used in the government’s funding model for non-government schools, and that must be commended,” said Association of Heads of Independent Schools of Australia CEO Beth Blackwood.

“However the NSRB’s recommendations will need rigorous testing, which means development of a funding model that provides certainty for families and schools and meets equity concerns may still be a few years away.”

Blackwood said that a big question requiring investigation is whether the creation of a ‘rolling average’ of SES scores based on annual assessments of household income will provide the operational stability for schools that the NSRB expects.

“Schools must have operational stability if they are to deliver consistency in educational provision,” she said.

“The NSRB has left the government with a huge task in testing and assessing the recommendations in its report, Senator Birmingham’s commitment to further consultation will be welcomed by schools, systems and parents.”


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