The Greens have welcomed the AEU’s new campaign for fully funded public schools and are calling on governments to stop gifting money to elite private schools and finally deliver on the promise of Gonski.
Comments attributable to Greens spokesperson on schools, Senator Penny Allman-Payne:
“Congratulations to the AEU for launching their For Every Child campaign for fully funded public schools. The union is right: public school kids deserve 100% funding.
“But schools can’t wait until the end of the next national funding agreement to get the money they desperately need. That’s 2028. Another five years away.
“That means a public school student in year 7 today will graduate high school having never experienced a fully resourced education.
“There are currently 2.6 million kids enrolled in public schools in Australia. About 2.5 million of them have never experienced a single day at a fully resourced school. Not one day. How many more kids are governments prepared to let down? What’s an acceptable number?
“Things are getting desperate. Overworked teachers, often forced to pay for basic educational resources schools can’t afford, are leaving in droves. Out-of-pocket costs for parents and carers are soaring. More students are disengaging and performance is dropping.
“Australia now has one of the most privatised and inequitable school systems in the world. It’s a system that heaps privilege onto a fortunate few under the guise of ‘parental choice’, while robbing millions of disadvantaged kids of their futures.
“Labor has an historic opportunity to right the wrongs of the past. They have a weak and chaotic opposition, friendly governments in every mainland state and territory, and a budget surplus of $20 billion. They could end this crisis tomorrow.
“The Greens are calling on Labor to guarantee full funding to all public schools from the start of the next national funding agreement in January 2025.
“Our kids can’t wait any longer."