National Catholic Education Commission (NCEC) has responded to the suggestion by Prime Minister Anthony Albanese MP that agreement might be reached on religious discrimination legislation with the Australian Greens party.

National Catholic education executive director Jacinta Collins said based on the Greens’ past track record, which shows a lack of support for people of faith and faith-based schools, a positive agreement would be very unlikely.

“We are concerned by reports from caucus today that the Prime Minister might negotiate with the Greens who have shown antipathy towards faith-based schools in the past, including seeking to remove school funding,” Ms Collins said.

“The PM indicated a path forward could be to work with the Greens if they are willing to support the rights of people to practise their faith, but admitted he didn’t currently have this support.”

“The Greens platform at the last election was to strip funding from any non-government school that preferences students or staff on the basis of a religious background.

“How could we expect a fair balance of protected rights if the Greens are ideologically opposed to religious schools?”

Catholic education is the largest provider of education in Australia outside of government, enrolling one in five, or 805,000 students and employing over 109,000 staff in 1,756 schools.

Photo by Matt Biocich (Catholic Education Western Australia)