6 September 2019
PDF version [240KB]
(originally prepared by Marilyn Harrington)
Social Policy Section
This Quick Guide provides links to
National policy and administrative
The Melbourne Declaration on Educational Goals for Young Australians (Melbourne Declaration) agreed to by the Australian Government and
state and territory government education ministers in 2008, sets the goals and
directions for Australian schooling. A review of
the Melbourne Declaration is underway in 2019.
- The Department of Education (DoE) has major
responsibility for Australian Government school education
Australian Government school education programs and
funding for Indigenous school students are administered by the National
Indigenous Australians Agency, which has primary
responsibility for Indigenous affairs, and the Department
- The Education Council is a standing council of the Council of Australian Governments (COAG).
Its membership includes Australian Government and state and territory
government education ministers and New Zealand ministers with portfolio
responsibility for school education and/or early childhood. It
replaced the Standing Council on School Education and Early Childhood (SCSEEC)
from 1 July 2014. The Education Council’s website includes an archive of the publications and communiques of
the SCSEEC and its predecessors.
- The Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA) is responsible for the development of the Australian curriculum, the National Assessment Program, which includes
Assessment Program—Literacy and Numeracy (NAPLAN), and
collection and reporting, which includes My School.
- The National
Report on Schooling in Australia, published by ACARA since 2009,
provides an overview of school education in Australia, key statistics and
funding information. Earlier
editions (1989–2008) were published by the Ministerial Council for
Education, Early Childhood Development and Youth Affairs (MCEECDYA) and its
predecessors and are available on the Education Council’s website.
- The annual Report on Government Services,
published by the Productivity Commission, provides an overview of school
education in Australia, key statistics and funding information—it provides
comparative data for the Australian and state and territory governments.
- The Australian Institute for
Teaching and School Leadership (AITSL) provides ‘national leadership for
the Commonwealth, State and Territory Governments in promoting excellence in
the profession of teaching and school leadership’. AITSL has developed
standards and provides resources across three focus areas—initial teacher
education (including maintaining an accredited programs
list), school leadership and teaching.
funding for schools
M Harrington, ‘Schools funding legislation passed by Parliament—an update on the
amendments’, FlagPost, Parliamentary Library blog, 28
- M Harrington, Australian Education Amendment Bill 2017,
Bills digest, 116, 2016–17, Parliamentary Library, Canberra, 2017.
M Harrington, Funding the National Plan for School Improvement: an explanation, Background note, Parliamentary Library, Canberra,
26 June 2013. Provides information about the Gillard Labor Government
school funding arrangements that commenced in 2014. As such, it does not
reflect the current school funding arrangements that were implemented in 2018.
Prior to 2014
- M Harrington, Australian Government funding for schools explained: 2013 update, Background note, Parliamentary Library, Canberra,
8 March 2013. Explains the previous funding arrangements and includes
a brief history of Australian Government funding for schools and historic
funding and statistical information.
- The Report on Financial Assistance Granted to each State in
Respect of (year). This annual report provided funding information by
program, and a summary of general recurrent and capital grants for individual
non-government schools, under the previous systems of Australian Government
funding for schools. From 2009, summary information about government schools
was not included because of changes in school funding arrangements introduced
in 2009. The last issue was for 2013.
- The My School
website, managed by ACARA, provides information about all schools in
Australia and includes key statistical data, financial information and school-wide
National Assessment Program–Literacy and Numeracy (NAPLAN) results.
- The Australian Schools
List, developed by ACARA, provides an update of all schools and
campuses in Australia obtained from state and territory school registration
authorities. The information includes school location, school type and school
- The School Funding
Estimator, available on the DoE website, provides for all schools estimated
Australian Government per student funding for each year from 2019 to 2021 and
for 2029 as well as some brief overall funding information.
- M Harrington, Schools by
Commonwealth Electoral Division, Parliamentary Library, Canberra. Information includes school name, school type (primary,
secondary, combined, special) and address. For non-government schools, campus
information and affiliation are also provided. The website includes a list of
school enrolments by electorate. (Note: this
item is only available to members of Parliament.)
- The National Assessment Program (NAP), managed by
ACARA, includes the annual NAPLAN for students in years 3, 5, 7 and 9 and
three-yearly NAP Sample Assessments in Science Literacy,
Civics and Citizenship, and Information and Communication Technology (ICT)
- The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and
Development (OECD) Programme for International Student Assessment
(PISA) is a three-yearly international survey of the reading, mathematics and
science capabilities of 15-year-old students.
- Progress in
International Reading and Literacy Study (PIRLS), a
project of the International Association for the Evaluation of Educational
Achievement (IEA), is a five-yearly international assessment of the reading
ability of students in Year 4.
- The Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS), an IEA project, is a four-yearly international survey of the
mathematics and science achievement of students in Year 4 and Year 8.
Indigenous school education
The following are some educational organisations that
represent the interests of school education stakeholders and/or undertake
research relating to school education. The Australasian Education
Directory (available through Informit) provides a comprehensive listing
of educational organisations.
International organisations and
overseas education departments
Overseas education departments
State and territory government websites
New South Wales (NSW)
South Australia (SA)
For copyright reasons some linked items are only available to members of Parliament.
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