14 May 2014

With $80 billion in cuts to schools and hospitals over the next decade, Tony Abbott's pre-election pledge that there would be no cuts to health or education is in tatters.

Before the election, the Abbott government promised:

"You can vote Liberal or Labor and you'll get exactly the same amount of funding for your school."

"No cuts to health, no cuts to education."

The Abbott Government has completely trashed the Gonski reforms and broken all of its promises on school funding.

That it was on an "absolute unity ticket" with Labor, that "no school will be worse off", that it would match school funding "dollar-for-dollar", and that it was "committed to this new school funding model".

Every Australian school will be worse off because the Government last night announcing inadequate new indexation arrangements which will see future funding stripped from every school across the nation.

Christopher Pyne promised "we will keep the current indexation rate which over the last 10 years has averaged 6 per cent" but the Budget has cut school funding growth in future years to just 2.5 per cent.

"It's now clear Tony Abbott deliberately set out to deceive Australian parents, teachers and students so he could try and win votes. The extent of that deception is now black and white in the budget papers."

This Budget means the Gonski reforms, which were the result of the most comprehensive education review in 40 years, cannot be delivered. Tony Abbott's CPI-only funding model abandons needs-based funding distribution and breaks a promise to provide a disability loading, ripping $6.5 billion out of schools over the next 5 years.

"Every student in every school will pay the price for Tony Abbott's broken promises - and students will simply not get the individual attention they need."

Under Labor's Gonski reforms, schools would have received an additional $14.65 billion over 6 years.

Cuts to education programs in Tony Abbott's first Budget include:

-Over $6.5 billion of federal funding cut from the Gonski reforms*

-Gonski disability loading will not proceed and $100 million per annum interim arrangements cut

-$950 million cut and 650 future Trade Training Centres in schools cancelled - discontinued

-$130 million per year Youth Education Programs including Youth Connections, Partnership Brokers and National Career Development - discontinued

-$450 million cut to Outside School Hours Care

-$2.6 million Australian Curriculum Assessment and Reporting Authority

-$20 million cuts to the Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership

-$5.4 million cut to the Australian Baccalaureate - discontinued

-$1.3 million per annum ABC Digital Education program - discontinued

-$7.2 million cut to Endeavour Language Teacher Fellowships - discontinued

-$38 million cut to the National Plan for School Improvement - discontinued

-$0.5 million per year National Asian Languages in Schools program - discontinued

-$29.2 million cut to Online Diagnostic Tools - discontinued

-$37 million cut to National Trade cadetships - discontinued

-$10,092 cut to framework for Open Learning - discontinued

-$3.7 million cut to Creative Young Stars - discontinued *


*Calculated by comparing the increase in federal funding under Labor's Gonski refroms to the end of the 2019 school year with the forward estimates in the Budget, and further projections based on the new CPI-only school funding indexation methodology outlined in the Budget. CPI was assumed to be 2.5 per cent per year, as projected in the Budget. Labor's 6 year Gonski funding commitment was for an additional $11.5 billion, including indexation of 4.7 per cent per year.