Member for Penrith Stuart Ayres MP welcomed the announcement by NSW Premier Barry O’Farrell that NSW is the first Australian State to agree to the “Gonski” education funding reforms, which will see an additional $5 billion invested into NSW schools.
This is great news for Penrith students, teachers and parents this agreement will mean more resources, a fairer system and higher standards, and as a result a better education for our children.
“The NSW Government has prioritised school education and made some tough decisions to find the $1.7 billion required to fund ‘Gonski’. The agreement highlights the NSW Liberals & Nationals Government’s commitment to delivering a world class education system in Penrith and across NSW.” said Mr Ayres
“Whilst I didn’t appreciate the tactics employed by the Federal Labor Government, which included threatening the removal of $300 million of education funds from NSW, it is important to recognise that the O’Farrell Government has chosen our children’s future over playing politics.” Mr Ayres said.
This $5 billion injection of funds will only make a difference in schools if it is supported by the continued education reform effort put in place by the O’Farrell Government since its election in 2011.
The ‘Gonski’ agreement builds on the NSW Government’s education reforms. This includes:
- Literacy and Numeracy Action Plan to raise standards in the basic building blocks of education;
- Great Teaching, Inspired Learning to lift the performance of the teaching profession;
- Local Schools, Local Decisions to empower principals and school communities to make decisions based on the needs of the local school and students; and
- Increasing the number of teachers in our schools with an additional 520 employed since the election
Funding will be provided to Government and Catholic systems and directly to independent schools. The new system ensures that no schools will lose funding. Each individual school will be assessed by the Commonwealth and State Governments using the agreed model to determine funding amounts based on the characteristics of the students and the school.
The new funding will provide loadings for students from low socio-economic backgrounds, students with disabilities, students from Indigenous backgrounds, students who need help with English and schools that are disadvantaged by their size or remoteness.
“I am proud to be a member of a Government that is committed to long term and historic reform of our States education system.” said Mr Ayres.