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School funding cuts

School funding cuts

12 May 2017

Turnbull Government's funding cuts to ACT Catholic schools including to students with disabilities

I have tried to communicate with you in a calm and informed manner and have passed on information from CE Director Ross Fox and the NCEC. Some things to remember:

  1. The base funding of all students at MacKillop has been frozen for 10 years and then will be cut. This includes students with disabilities. This was confirmed to me over the phone by Minister Birmingham’s office. This is a disgrace and is not fair!
  2. After 10 years, MacKillop’s funding will be cut by $777 per student, a net loss of $4.6m.
  3. Over the same period, Canberra Girls’ Grammar will receive additional funding of $8.8m. I do not begrudge CGGS getting this money but it does not fit any fairness test in my mind and does make one question the Prime Minister’s claim that the Gonski 2.0 model is “fair for all.”
  4. MacKillop is a large, prudently managed school, better able than most to manage funding arrangements over time.
  5. Everything will be done to avoid sudden and sharp fee hikes to current and future families.
  6. The quality of the educational experience of MacKillop will not be compromised.
  7. Investment in the professional learning of staff will continue to be a priority.
  8. The College will run class sizes in keeping with guidelines of the Enterprise Agreement. Class sizes alter during term time as the College enrolment does change but the EA size is usually closely adhered to.
  9. Clearly the Gonski 2.0 funding model is unraveling as the government’s figures change and are challenged. Let’s work with what we’ve got in a calm, mature manner and work towards better and fairer times for Catholic education in Canberra.

Yours in St Mary MacKillop,

Michael Lee