First Gonski funding for Victoria

GonskiHands.jpgVictorian schools will finally begin getting their Gonski funding from 2016, the Andrews Government has announced.

This move is a major breakthrough for Victorian schools but is only the first step in ensuring they get the resources they need to give all students a quality education.

Schools have found out the extra funding they will be getting next year, and can now start planning to use it to improve student outcomes.

Because the funding is based on student need, amounts vary but many schools are getting significant amounts which will give them the chance to do more for their students.

In States where the Gonski money is flowing, such as NSW and SA, schools are already able to invest in literacy and numeracy programs, smaller class sizes, more support staff and professional development for teacher, all of which are lifting results.

These states have promised to fund the full six years of Gonski, regardless of what the Federal Government does, something the Andrews Government is yet to do.

The 20 Victorian public schools who will receive the most extra funding in 2016 are listed below. To see how much your school will gain, click here.

This funding is on top of the usual increases for indexation and for rising enrolment. It’s new money for new programs.

Northern Bay P-12 College

$2,132,631

Dandenong High School

$1,571,723

Narre Warren South P-12 College

$1,346,647

Wodonga Senior Secondary College

$1,313,617

Keysborough Secondary College

$1,013,445

Maryborough Education Centre

$1,013,145

Roxburgh College

$929,484

Benalla P-12 College

$920,540

Kurnai College

$884,225

Hampton Park Secondary College

$851,211

Noble Park English Language School

$850,598

Cranbourne Secondary College

$830,806

Hallam Senior Secondary College

$830,467

Dandenong South Primary School

$813,638

Wellington Secondary College

$803,791

Seymour College

$792,142

Whittlesea Secondary College

$780,708

Iramoo Primary School

$759,510

Laverton P-12 College

$737,730

Phoenix P-12 Community College

$728,707

But this is only the start of the extra funding that Victorian schools are owed under the Gonski agreement.

We need to keep campaigning to make sure that, along with the Federal Government, the Andrews Government commits to the vital fifth and six years of Gonski when the majority of the funding is due (2018 and 2019).

It’s crucial that Victorian schools have the same certainty over funding as Victorian schools should have the same certainty as their counterparts in NSW and SA.

From 2016, extra resources will flow to schools outside Melbourne, with regional schools receiving more than double the additional money per capita that those in the city. Schools in regional Victoria will receive an additional $437 per student compared with a $209 average per student increase in funding for metropolitan schools.

Victorian Education Minister James Merlino said today that: "This is the biggest and the most profound boost to school education funding we've seen for many, many years.”

He’s right but it needs to be the start of a sustained investment in schools to make sure they have the resources that Gonski recommended.

Victoria has the lowest amount of government funding per student of any state or territory. The Gonski agreement signed in 2013 was meant to be the way that disadvantaged Victorian schools could get more money in their budgets so they could invest in programs for students.

But it didn’t turn out that way. The Napthine Government failed to deliver a single extra dollar to schools in 2014, before losing the election at the end of that year.

While the Andrews Government has done better, failing to deliver the full six years of Gonski will see Victorian schools fall behind those in other States.

For students who are waiting for literacy and numeracy support or assistance with a disability and for schools struggling with tight budgets that can’t support every student that needs it, this money is essential.

If the Andrews Government is serious about being the Education State, it needs to get serious about delivering the full Gonski.

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