Overfunded private schools spend hundreds of millions on new buildings while public schools miss out.
The latest My School data exposes the gross inequities in Malcolm Turnbull’s education funding system. The data reveals how four elite Sydney schools alone have spent just under $200 million on capital works between 2014 and 2016, while public schools continue to suffer funding cuts under Turnbull’s education funding plan.
“Malcolm Turnbull is fuelling the educational equivalent of an arms race for private schools,” said Correna Haythorpe, President of the Australian Education Union.
“Elite private schools spending tens of millions on wellness centres, rowing tanks, ballet studies and libraries that look like Scottish castles.
“Private schools are diverting millions in recurrent funding to capital works because in many cases they are getting more than they are entitled to. Malcolm Turnbull’s new funding plan makes this worse.
“The Turnbull Government is giving private schools a separate $1.9 billion capital fund while public schools get nothing which is a huge problem in NSW with public school enrolments expected to grow by 21% by 2031.
“Turnbull has reignited the school funding wars by giving private schools 80 percent of their public funding entitlement, leaving public schools with only 20 percent of the recurrent funding they require.
“In NSW, enrolments in public schools are expected to grow by 21% by 2031. Schools need the infrastructure and resources to support an increasing population.
“Public schools serve their local communities and should be funded to provide quality learning environments. We need strong leaders who support their communities by investing in public school education.
“The Australian Education Union is calling on our state and federal Governments to work together to reduce educational inequity. We call for a new capital funding stream for public schools in the May budget. All students deserve safe, comfortable learning facilities,” said Ms Haythorpe.