Australian Government funding for schools

Parliament house flag post

Australian Government funding for schools

Posted 13/03/2013 by Marilyn Harrington


Image source: UK Government
There is much anticipation about the future of school funding with the Australian Government’s proposed new arrangements for school funding expected to be presented to the Council of Australian Governments’ meeting in April this year. The proposed changes will follow on from the recommendations of the final report of the Review of Funding for Schooling (the Gonski Review).

The Labor Government took its first steps towards reforming school education funding when, in 2009, it transformed a funding structure that in essence had been in place since 1974. It created a single National Schools Specific Purpose Payment (SPP), which provides most of the Australian Government’s funding for schools. The National Schools SPP for government schools combined previous recurrent and capital funding for government schools, with some additions, into the one payment. The recurrent and capital programs funded by the non-government school component of the National Schools SPP remain as before, including the Socioeconomic Status (SES) system for determining the amount of per student general recurrent funding for non-government schools. Additional funding for both government and non-government schools is provided by a number of National Partnerships (NPs), including NPs targeting literacy and numeracy, teacher quality and socioeconomic disadvantage.
 
Except for the temporary stimulus of the Building the Education Revolution programs, the underlying historic pattern of ongoing government funding for schools has remained, with the Australian Government providing most of its school funding to non-government schools and state and territory governments providing most of their funding to government schools. 
 
A new Background Note from the Parliamentary Library shows that, as the funding system is currently, from 1999–00 to 2013–14, Australian Government funding for schools will increase in real terms (2011–12 dollars), by an estimated 74.0 per cent, from $7.5 billion to an estimated $13.0 billion. Government school funding will increase in real terms by an estimated 46.2 per cent and, for non-government schools, by an estimated 92.6 per cent. As Budget Paper No. 1 (p. 6-17) shows, non-government schools are scheduled to receive an estimated 64.6 per cent of Australian Government funding for schools in 2013–14.
 
The Background Note explains that most of the ongoing funding increase for schools is the result of indexation. The remainder is from increases in student enrolments and new money as the result of government policy initiatives. The indexation formula is based upon a measure of the average cost of educating a child in a government school (with different amounts for primary and secondary school students). From 1999 to 2012, the weighted average (primary and secondary) Average Government School Recurrent Costs (AGSRC), increased by 28.5 per cent in real prices.
 
The 2012–13 Budget forward estimates for the National Schools SPP were based upon a weighted growth factor of 6.0 per cent. However, as also explained in the Background Note, the AGSRC increases for 2012 were lower than expected, resulting in a fall in the average weighted increase from 6.0 per cent to 3.9 per cent. Hence, as revealed in the Mid-year Economic and Fiscal Outlook 2012–13 (pp. 75–6), the Government adjusted the growth factor downwards for the forward estimates, from 6.0 per cent to 5.6 per cent.
 
The Australian Education Bill is the first phase of a major reform of Australia’s school education system that will also see fundamental changes in how governments fund school education. The Bill currently includes the Government’s National Plan for School Improvement that has overarching goal for Australia to be ranked as one of the top five highest performing countries (based on the performance of Australian school students in international tests in reading, science and mathematics and the quality and equity of Australian schooling) by 2025.
 
The new national school funding model and increased funding will be tied to implementation of the National Plan. The Government’s broad plan, as outlined in its formal response to the final report of the Gonski Review, is to implement the report’s major recommendations for recurrent funding. These include a new per student Schooling Resource Standard and various loadings for disadvantage that will, if implemented, result in new expenditure of about $6.5 billion per year.
 
The Background Note updates a previous version. It explains the system of Australian Government funding for schools and examines expenditure trends in detail. It also provides a brief history of Australian Government funding for schools and an overview of the final report of the Gonski Review and the Government’s response to date. 
 
Source: M Harrington, Australian Government funding for schools explained, Background note, Parliamentary Library, Canberra, 8 March 2013.
 
Other Parliamentary Library publications about school education and funding:


Thank you for your comment. If it does not require moderation, it will appear shortly.

Add your comment

[Click to expand]

We welcome your comments, or additional information which is relevant to a post. These can be added by clicking on the ‘Add your comment’ option above. Please note that the Parliamentary Library will moderate comments, and reserves the right not to publish comments that are inconsistent with the objectives of FlagPost. This includes spam, profanity and personal abuse, as well as comments that are factually incorrect or politically partisan. We will close comments after three months.




Captcha
Generate a new image
Type characters from the image:

Facebook LinkedIn Twitter Add | Email Print

FlagPost

Flagpost is a blog on current issues of interest to members of the Australian Parliament


Parliamentary Library Logo showing Information Analysis & Advice

Archive

Syndication

Tagcloud

Refugees asylum climate change immigration Australian foreign policy parliament social security welfare reform school education welfare policy health financing elections Australian Defence Force emissions trading women higher education private health insurance people trafficking Indigenous Australians illicit drugs gambling health reform federal election 2010 Employment Asia Medicare United Nations Australian Bureau of Statistics statistics sport health forced labour federal budget Afghanistan Industrial Relations Carbon Pricing Mechanism politics Middle East income management dental health United States aid disability child protection environment poker machines Australia in the Asian Century Australian Sports Anti-Doping Agency steroids World Anti-Doping Agency National Disability Insurance Scheme detention aged care 43rd Parliament slavery health system Fair Work Act Australian Public Service governance labour force people smuggling transport debt taxation international relations constitution New Zealand food WADA Australian Crime Commission pharmaceutical benefits scheme public service reform law enforcement children's health Aviation foreign debt gross debt net debt defence capability parliamentary procedure Senate Senators and Members ALP ASADA Australian Federal Police criminal law Newstart Parenting Payment multiculturalism Youth Allowance sea farers accountability Papua New Guinea youth paid parental leave pensions same sex relationships corruption coal seam gas customs planning federal election 2013 Australian Electoral Commission doping OECD crime health risks International Women's Day Gonski Review of Funding for Schooling sex slavery Special Rapporteur Northern Territory Emergency Response social policy carbon tax mining High Court Higher Education Loan Program HECS military history electoral reform employer employee renewable energy regional unemployment fishing European Union Federal Court family assistance skilled migration banking United Nations Security Council Australian economy forestry food labelling vocational education and training Drugs UK Parliament welfare systems Indonesia social media children federal state relations Constitutional reform local government codes of conduct terrorist financing homelessness Parliamentary remuneration money laundering Trafficking in Persons Report energy science social inclusion human rights paternalism World Trade Organization Australia public health China housing affordability bulk billing political parties water productivity health policy Governor-General US economy trade unions domestic violence export liquefied natural gas foreign bribery firearms question time speaker superannuation public housing election results by-election expertise public policy climate Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change leadership terrorist groups voting Department of Agriculture Fisheries and Forestry regulation Pacific Islands reserved seats research and development new psychoactive substances synthetic drugs UNODC ASIO Australian Security Intelligence Organisation intelligence community carbon markets animal health middle class welfare ADRV Census Indigenous constitutional recognition of local government referendum consumer laws PISA competition policy royal commission US politics violence against women language education baby bonus Leaders of the Opposition citizen engagement policymaking Australia Greens servitude Trafficking Protocol forced marriage Population rural and regional mental health alcohol entitlements ministries Hung Parliament social citizenship maritime Iran transparency ANZUS regional students school chaplains federal budget 2011-12 salary Medicare Locals primary care Building the Education Revolution smoking plain packaging tobacco cigarettes Asia; Japan; international relations Work Health and Safety Migration; asylum seekers; regional processing China; United States; international relations fiscal policy Racial Discrimination Act; social policy; human rights; indigenous Australians Foreign policy Southeast Asia Israel Palestine asylum refugees immigration political finance donations foreign aid disability employment Economics efficiency human rights; Racial Discrimination Act employment law bullying asylum seekers Animal law; food copyright Australian Law Reform Commission industry peace keeping contracts workplace policies same-sex marriage disorderly conduct integrity retirement Parliament House Australian Secret Intelligence Service welfare standing orders prime ministers election timetable sitting days First speech terrorism defence budget submarines workers financial sector Canada Somalia United Kingdom GDP Tasmania world heritage political engagement leave loading Trade; tariffs; safeguards; Anti-dumping public interest disclosure whistleblowing Productivity Commission limitation period universities Ireland cancer gene patents genetic testing suspension of standing and sessional orders live exports infant mortality honorary citizen railways disciplinary tribunals standard of proof World Health Organisation arts international students skilled graduate visas temporary employment visas apologies roads Italy national heritage NHMRC nutrition anti-dumping Rent Assistance obesity evidence law sacrament of confession sexual abuse US presidential election international days DFAT UN General Assembly deregulation Regulation Impact Statements administrative law small business Breaker Morant regional engagement social determinants of health abortion Members suspension workplace health and safety marine reserves hearing TAFE Victoria astronomy resources sector YMCA youth parliament Korea fuel rebate Australian Greens presidential nomination Racial Discrimination Act political parties preselection solar hot water Financial Action Taskforce Horn of Africa peacekeeping piracy Great Barrier Reef Stronger futures political financing political education Social Inclusion Board early childhood National Quality Framework for Early Childhood Education and Care Murray-Darling Basin sanctions Norway hospitals republic President Barack Obama Presidential visits qantas counselling Korean peninsula Work Choices biosecurity hendra environmental law federalism federation preselection therapeutic goods Therapeutic Goods Administration plebiscites computer games pests suicide nuclear COAG Ministerial Councils floods ADHD stimulant medication advertising electricity extradition standards conscience votes poverty preventative health rural health coastal erosion Parliamentary Budget Office NATO work-life balance

Show all
Show less