Federal Member for Ballarat, Catherine King, today said students across Ballarat and region will gain great benefits from the Government plan for proper resourcing of all classrooms, teachers and schools for generations to come.
“We are implementing a once in a generation opportunity to make sure that every young child in Australia gets a high quality education,” Ms King said.
“The Government is serious about the next stage of schooling reform.
“We want to see a fair funding system in place so that every school – regardless of state, regardless of sector – gets the money it needs to do a great job.
“Over the five years from 2014 to 2019 Victorian schools will receive around an extra $4 billion under the program. Schools in our region will share in those benefits.”
Ms King said the decision to find savings in the higher education sector to help fund the school plan was not an easy one, but was taken in the context of the Government’s continuing strong support for universities.
“Under the Labor Government, funding for university places has increased by 50 per cent – from $3.8 billion in 2007 to $5.8 billion in 2012 – and, as a result of uncapping university places, around 146,000 extra student places have been made available this year,” Ms King said.
“Taking account of the $2.3 billion in savings, Commonwealth funding for higher education will continue to rise sharply and the number of higher education places will continue its steep increase,” Ms King said.
“At the same time, here in Ballarat, we are investing $57 million on the new Science and Engineering Precinct and the Manufacturing Technology Training Centre at the University of Ballarat.
Ms King said the Government will retain the demand-driven system that is enabling more young people to go to university and large numbers of the first children in families to be able to walk through university gates.
“We are also committed to the Higher Education Grants indexation system.
“But to have quality universities it is essential we have quality students and that starts with their education through the school system, so we are totally committed to ensuring a great school system as well,” Ms King said.