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Josh Frydenberg - Liberal for Kooyong
  
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Questions Without Notice (23 May 2017)

Date: Tuesday, 23 May 2017 3:21 PM
Location: House of Representatives

Ms HENDERSON (Corangamite) (14:46):  My question is to the Minister for the Environment and Energy representing the Minister for Education and Training. Will the minister inform the House how the government's needs-based funding model will provide the greatest funding increases to the most disadvantaged students in schools like St Mary's School, Colac, in my electorate of Corangamite? Will the minister outline to the House—

Opposition members interjecting

The SPEAKER:  The member for Rankin and the member for Franklin are warned. The member for Corangamite will begin her question again. The member for Ballarat joins the warned list as well.

Ms HENDERSON:  My question is to the Minister for the Environment and Energy representing the Minister for Education and Training. Will the minister inform the House how the government's needs-based funding model will provide the greatest funding increases to the most disadvantaged students in schools like St Mary's School, Colac, in my electorate of Corangamite? Will the minister outline to the House how the government's Quality Schools reforms have been received by the community?

Mr FRYDENBERG (Kooyong—Minister for the Environment and Energy) (14:47):  I thank the member for Corangamite for her question. I know that she welcomes the Turnbull government's $18.6 billion increase to school funding over the next decade—a 75 per cent increase to true needs-based funding in a transparent way to create a nationally consistent system. No wonder it has been warmly received by the Grattan Institute, by the primary schools association, by the Christian schools association, by the government schools association.

Corangamite has 66 schools: 53 government schools, nine Catholic schools and four independent schools.

An opposition member interjecting

Mr FRYDENBERG:  The interjection says that they are worse off. In fact, news for the opposition is that every one of those 66 schools in Corangamite are better off thanks to the Turnbull government's reforms—like St Mary's in Coolac, with 245 students, which will get nearly an additional $6 million over the next 10 years. Indeed, the Catholic sector receives more Commonwealth funding per student than any other sector in every state and territory. I think that is important to understand. We are coupling these reforms of additional funding with also a focus on excellence: literacy and numeracy testing for grade 1s to encourage early intervention; literacy and numeracy for student teachers to assist them; a national certification process for new principal.

I am asked whether there are any obstacles to this. The obstacle comes from those opposite, who have support for 27 secret deals. They are supporting less money for schools and they are turning their backs on David Gonski, who they described as the doyen, the architect, the oracle of a needs-based funding model. They are turning their back.

The member for Chifley says that I like to finish with quote, so I will today. I know the member for Sydney thinks that the person who gave this quote does not have a vote, but he does have a voice—and guess who it is from. It is from Craig Emerson, the former Labor Minister for Tertiary Education. He says:

Now, here is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to lock in a school-funding system that can give every disadvantaged child a chance of a good education, and Labor has pledged to block it.

It's heartbreaking.

(Time expired) 

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