QTU President
Kevin Bates

President’s comment 14 May 2013

Federal budget preview

Early reports of the Federal Government’s budget announcement say the Gonski schools funding reforms (known as the National Plan for School Improvement) will be presented as a 10-year commitment, rather than across the usual four-year budget forward estimates timeframe.

This is good news, for a number of reasons. One is that the ALP Federal Government must show that the funding is sustainable, to silence the critics. The second is that such investment, being made as it is in this nation’s human capital, will show benefits over the longer term. The third is that schools in all sectors will have certainty that the children suffering from educational disadvantage in their schools will receive the extra funding they need over at least most of their formal years of schooling.

Of course, the realisation of these funding reforms still rests with state governments around the country agreeing to partner with the Federal Government – and in Queensland, there is still little sign that the State Government is prepared to do so, despite the obvious benefits to Queensland’s students and schools.

While the Gonski reforms are critical for schools, it is important to remember that education is not solely delivered by schools. The QTU has already publicly rejected the Federal Government’s slowdown in future funding for universities, and will be watching carefully any budgetary impacts on TAFE and VET.

The complexities of funding in this sector will take some time to analyse fully, so watch the QTU website over the next few days for analysis of announcements made tonight, 14 May 2013.

Kevin Bates