Premier Gladys Berejiklian, Education Minister Rob Stokes and Treasurer Dominic Perrottet announced today that a school funding agreement has been reached with the federal government and that from next year, the NSW government would fund an additional $6.4 billion by 2027 for schools across the country, bringing the total state investment to $148 billion for public and non-public schools. Under the new agreement, Victoria must increase its contribution to school resources – the basis of the Gonski exam – from 67.8%, one of Australia`s lowest shares, to 75 per cent over 10 years. Mr. Merlino wrote to Mr. Tehan on Saturday to tell him that he had signed the agreement. Stokes said the agreement guaranteed fair funding for all schools, with the NSW government pledging to allocate additional funds to public education. “Our agreement provides funding security for Victorian schools.” We simply have no choice if we sign this agreement, we must give financial security to schools and we will not put them in danger of missing out on all federal school funding,” he told the Journal du Dimanche. It is clear that this will cost the state coffers an additional $7 billion over the duration of the bilateral agreement, which runs from 2019 to 2023. There is no breakdown of these additional funds per year.
Victorian Education Minister James Merlino has finally reached a school funding agreement with the Commonwealth. “In the absence of this, the NSW government has stepped in to allocate additional funds to public schools to ensure that this historic funding agreement treats all NSW students fairly.” Faced with strong pressure to ensure the financial security of public, Catholic and independent schools, Prime Minister Daniel Andrews said he had no choice but to reach an agreement with the Commonwealth. Australian Education Union President Meredith Peace said it was not the deal she hoped would be, but schools would be safe.