$566 Million for Disadvantaged Students
15 September 2015 at 11:10 am
The peak Victorian welfare body has welcomed the State Government’s $566 million education funding “targeted to break the cycle of disadvantage”.
Under a new funds allocation model, those considered the highest-need students will be those attending the most disadvantaged schools, whose parents have not completed Year 12 and are unemployed or in a low-skilled occupation, or those did not meet minimum NAPLAN standards.
The funding was allocated from the $747 million the Andrews Government set aside for Victorian schools in the May budget.
From the the 2016 school year, the extra $566 million over four years and an ongoing $171 million for further programs will boost needs-based funding in the state by 70 per cent.
The Victorian Council of Social Service (VCOSS) said the funding showed Premier Daniel Andrews was delivering on his commitment to make Victoria the Education State.
“A quality education is key to developing an inclusive society and economy. Too many children and young people have missed out on a quality education as a consequence of experiencing disadvantage. They face barriers to participating in school and sometimes drop out of the education system altogether,” VCOSS CEO, Emma King, said.
“The significant investment announced will help deliver a high quality education for all students, irrespective of their circumstances.”
King said the funding would support disadvantaged students across the entire education system, where previously disadvantaged students in more advantaged postcodes were left out.
“The new funding includes almost $150 million per annum additional equity funding in student loadings, to improve outcomes based on the needs of individual students,” she said.
“The importance of making sure that all children meet minimum standards is critical. The additional funding of $2,000 per annum for students that do not meet the national average in Grade 5 NAPLAN will enable students to catch up.”
Currently 10,000 young people drop out of school every year, and the Andrews Government has set targets to halve the number of students leaving during years 9 to 12.
“This is about confidence for every parent and a chance for every child,” Premier Daniel Andrews said.
“Our education system isn’t broken – but we can absolutely make it better. We can break the cycle of disadvantage and build a brighter future for everyone.”