Contrary to reports in the press, the Australian Government has not come to agreement with Catholic education over its new funding package and funding in Catholic schools in future years is yet to be determined.The agreement of some senators is contingent on the Turnbull Government agreeing to address our concerns. What shape this takes is yet to be determined.
This means we need to send a clear message to Senators about our concerns. This needs to be sent as soon as possible, since the debate is underway.
The text of a sample message is at the bottom of this message.
I urge you to please email the message to these Senators
Senator Di Natale, Leader of the Greens
Senator Fifield, Victorian Coalition Senator
Senator Hume, Victorian Coalition Senator
Senator McKenzie, Victorian Coalition Senator
Senator Paterson, Victorian Coalition Senator
Senator Ryan, Victorian Coalition Senator
We need to help make sure the Australian Government funds our students fairly.
Thank you for your support.
Email message to Senators
When Catholic education first raised concerns with the Turnbull Government’s Quality Schoolsfunding package, Minister Birmingham said there was ‘a lot of exaggeration’ about the impact that it would have on schools like mine.
According to the Education Department’s own calculations, Catholic schools in Victoria will be $1.6 billion worse off if the Turnbull Government’s new funding package is passed by the Senate.
That is $1.6 billion that students, mainly from low and middle-income Victorian families, won’t have to support their education. It’s $1.6 billion that will mean either cuts to school programs or higher fees – or both.
And that is just $1.6 billion from a total of loss of $4.6 billion that will be felt by Catholic school communities across Australia.
It is pretty clear that Catholic education wasn’t exaggerating.
For about 200 years Catholic schooling has been provided in Australia out of a sense of mission, and from a desire to make a faith-based education as accessible and affordable as possible to the community – not for profit.
Our school system distributes funds across schools to meet the special, individual needs of each school community – including funding for VET and VCAL students, additional support for new or small schools, refugee and new arrival and other disadvantaged students, and professional development for teachers and school leaders. The system also smoothes out the costs across the system, minimising fees.
The Turnbull Government proposes to focus on individual schools. Funding will be based on school socioeconomic status scores, which paint broad-brush pictures about the ability of parents to afford fees and do not reflect the true circumstances of local communities. This is despite the Gonski Review’s call for these scores to be replaced ‘as soon as possible’.
As a member of a Catholic school community, and on behalf of the broader Catholic education family across Victoria, I urge you and your colleagues to vote against the new funding package.
<Insert your name>
Videos to watch
Keep Funding Fair: http://youtu.be/iyOHTbWNqHs
Say No to Catholic Education Cuts: http://youtu.be/yskqbzdA_pI