Fund­ing boost for NSW schools

The Australian Education Reporter - - NEWS - EL­IZ­A­BETH FABRI

MORE than 2000 pub­lic schools across NSW will re­ceive a share of $1.09 bil­lion in 2018 to fund ed­u­ca­tional re­sources and stu­dent sup­port, in­clud­ing ad­di­tional speech pathol­o­gists, tar­geted lit­er­acy and nu­mer­acy pro­grams, and teacher train­ing.

The fund­ing – an $80 mil­lion or 8 per cent in­crease on 2017 lev­els – will be de­liv­ered un­der the NSW Gov­ern­ment’s Re­source Al­lo­ca­tion Model (RAM), which as­signs funds to schools based on stu­dent need.

NSW Premier Gla­dys Bere­jik­lian said needs-based fund­ing was mak­ing a “real dif­fer­ence to the out­comes of stu­dents at a lo­cal level”.

“This fund­ing al­lows schools to de­velop pro­grams that ad­dress aca­demic and well-be­ing needs iden­ti­fied in their schools,” Ms Bere­jik­lian said.

High schools with sig­nif­i­cantly in­creased fund­ing for 2018 in­cluded Bal­lina Coast High School which will re­ceive $1.46 mil­lion, and Lurnea High School, which will re­ceive $2.25 mil­lion.

Pri­mary schools that will also re­ceive big in­creases in­cluded Oran Park Pub­lic School ($840,000), Smith­field Pub­lic School ($1.33 mil­lion), and Muswell­brook South Pub­lic School ($1.87 mil­lion).

NSW Teach­ers Fed­er­a­tion pres­i­dent Mau­rie Mul­heron said the State Gov­ern­ment’s $80 mil­lion spend­ing in­crease would have been dwarfed by the

“This fund­ing al­lows schools to de­velop pro­grams that ad­dress aca­demic and well-be­ing needs iden­ti­fied in their schools.”

Na­tional Ed­u­ca­tion Re­form Agree­ment (NERA) – the orig­i­nal ‘Gonski’ agree­ment – fig­ure of $218 mil­lion in 2018 and $419 mil­lion in 2019.

“This high­lights the sav­age cuts to schools re­sult­ing from the Turn­bull Gov­ern­ment’s de­ci­sion to aban­don the NERA agree­ment that had been signed with the NSW gov­ern­ment,” Mr Mul­heron said.

NSW Ed­u­ca­tion min­is­ter Rob Stokes said the 2018 needs-based fund­ing in­crease was ad­di­tional to fund­ing an­nounced in Septem­ber un­der the Schools Lead­er­ship Strat­egy to en­able em­ploy­ment of ex­tra sup­port staff so prin­ci­pals could fo­cus on ed­u­ca­tional lead­er­ship.

“The com­bi­na­tion of fund­ing in­creases and changes will en­able schools to sharpen their fo­cus on cater­ing for the spe­cific aca­demic and well­be­ing needs of their in­di­vid­ual stu­dents,” Mr Stokes said.

The fund­ing for 2018 was an­nounced at Sa­muel Terry Pub­lic School, in Crane­brook.

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