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Setting the Record Straight on School Funding

A report from the Centre for Policy Development released today contains analysis of the Australian education system. National Catholic Education Commission executive director Ross Fox says the report contains flawed analysis and unsubstantiated claims.

The report’s authors claim that by 2020, Catholic schools will be receiving higher levels of funding from government sources than government schools. The methodology used to create those so-called projections is seriously flawed and not credible, Mr Fox said.

“The funding projections have been done using historical funding data, a ruler and a pencil,” Mr Fox said.

Click here to read the full media release.

Radical Funding Freeze Proposal Unjustified, Would Hurt Students

National Catholic Education Commission executive director Ross Fox says a proposal to freeze funding for Catholic schools would abandon the principle of needs-based funding and would be a serious blow to the education of students in non-government schools.

A new report from the Centre for Policy Development includes a recommendation to cancel important and necessary increases in government funding for Catholic and independent schools.

“To propose a freeze on the funding levels for 1.3 million students from all backgrounds is radical and unjustified. It would have dire consequences for the future of non-government schools and the education of those students,” Mr Fox said.

Click here to read the full media release.

Flawed Assumptions, Simplistic Comparisons Disappointing

National Catholic Education Commission executive director Ross Fox says Fairfax Media reports this morning use flawed assumptions and simplistic comparisons to create a misleading picture of how Australian schools are funded.

“Discussion on school funding should be driven by facts, not by cherry-picking of data and flawed assumptions. Flawed analysis does nothing to support teaching and learning in Australian schools,” Mr Fox said.

“Australian schools are funded based on the needs of the students in those schools. According to the latest available data, government schools, on average, receive $12,100 per student from government. Catholic schools receive $10,000 and independent schools $8,200 per student.”

Click here to read the full media release.

School Funding Diversion Ignores the Facts

National Catholic Education Commission executive director Ross Fox says the Australian Education Union’s diversion on school funding today ignores the reality of school enrolment and students’ needs.

“This apparent attempt to turn school funding discussions into a battle between school sectors will do nothing to support students or teachers,” Mr Fox said.

Mr Fox said today’s analysis and the subsequent media reports ignore the reality of school funding.

Click here to read the full media release.

Education Front and Centre as Election Campaign Nears

How government policy supports quality teaching and learning and how schools are funded will be a focus of the upcoming federal election campaign, National Catholic Education Commission executive director Ross Fox has said.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull in the coming days is expected to ask Governor-General Sir Peter Cosgrove to dissolve Parliament and thereby start the countdown to a July 2 election.

“Over the next eight weeks, political parties and candidates will outline their vision for the future of Australia, and that future is dependent on how students and schools are supported,” Mr Fox said.

Click here to read the full media release.

Labor Underlines Its Commitment to School Education

The National Catholic Education Commission has welcomed Opposition Leader Bill Shorten’s clear support for school education in his Budget-in-reply speech, reiterating the principles of the “Your Child. Our Future” policy announced in January.

Mr Shorten last night said he is committed to ensuring “every child, in every school, gets every opportunity for a great world-class education”.

NCEC executive director Ross Fox said Mr Shorten has laid the groundwork for school education to be a focus ahead of the election.

Click here to read the full media release.

Budget Delivers Indexation Certainty on School Funding

The National Catholic Education Commission says the additional recurrent funding confirmed in tonight’s federal Budget gives certainty on funding indexation to principals, school staff and families.

“Investment in schools to ensure quality teaching and learning is critical to the future of Australia,” NCEC executive director Ross Fox said.

The 2016-17 Commonwealth Budget confirmed there will be $1.2 billion in additional funding to support all Australian schools from 2018 to 2020. This reflects a commitment to indexation at 3.56 per cent for school funding beyond 2017. Over the forward estimates, funding for government schools will increase by 33 per cent, while funding for non-government schools, including Catholic schools, will increase by 22.7 per cent.

Click here to read the full media release.

Catholic Education Welcomes School Funding Commitment

The National Catholic Education Commission has welcomed the Coalition Government’s announcement of $1.2 billion in additional funding to support all Australian schools, saying it has placed school education at the centre of this year’s federal election campaign.

“Schools are important institutions in the community and well-directed investment in schools will determine the future of Australia as a society and an economy,” NCEC executive director Ross Fox said.

“Catholic education is pleased that the Government has today committed to future funding that reflects real costs for schools.”

Click here to read the full media release.

Action to Avoid Unnecessary ACNC Red Tape Welcomed

Non-government schools across Australia, including Catholic schools, stand to benefit from the Commonwealth Government’s announcement today that the transitional arrangements for non-government school financial reporting to the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC) will be extended by two years, the National Catholic Education Commission has said.

Since the ACNC was established, non-government schools’ existing reporting mechanisms have been accepted as fulfilling the reporting requirements under the ACNC legislation. The transition was originally scheduled to end in 2016, but the Government’s announcement has seen that transition period extended to include the 2016 and 2017 school years.

Click here to read the full media release.

Catholic Schools and Parents Need Funding Certainty

When the leaders of Australia’s governments gather this week, providing certainty on school funding beyond 2017 should be a priority, the National Catholic Education Commission has said.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull will meet with premiers and chief ministers on Friday, with Commonwealth funding for education and health expected to be on the agenda. Mr Turnbull has foreshadowed a key topic.

Click here to read the full media release.

Catholic School Parents Cover Almost One-Third of Education Costs

Parents of students in Catholic schools continue to pay almost 30 per cent of the cost of educating their child, on average, despite increases in government funding to meet the changing educational needs of students in Catholic schools, new government data shows.

School funding data on the My School website showed that the share of recurrent funding that Catholic school parents pay has been consistent in recent years at 29 per cent.

Click here to read the full media release.

My School One Reference for Educators, Families

The National Catholic Education Commission has welcomed the release of updated data on the My School website and said the recognition of schools that have achieved significant improvements should be used to support educators and students in all schools.

The Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority’s My School website was this morning updated with 2015 national assessment program (NAPLAN) results, 2015 profile and population data for each school, student attendance data broken down by Indigenous status and the 2014 financial information for each school, including capital expenditure and sources of funding.

Click here to read the full media release

Catholic Schools Partners in Eliminating Bullying

National Catholic Education Commission executive director Ross Fox says Catholic schools are committed to creating safe environments that are free from bullying for all students, but a review of the Safe Schools Coalition is appropriate.

Two respected academics were last week chosen to lead the Government-initiated review of the program, which was intended to address bullying of same-sex attracted, bisexual, transgender and intersex students, teachers and staff.

“Everyone agrees that schools should be safe places free from bullying,” Mr Fox said.

Click here to read the full media release

Government School Funding Reflects Needs

Students in non-government schools receive 58 per cent of the government funding a student in a government school receives. Recent increases in public funding for non-government schools reflect the changing profile of students in Catholic and independent schools, the National Catholic Education Commission has explained.

The Productivity Commission yesterday released its Report on Government Services for childcare, education and training. It includes data on schools up to 2014 and shows there has been a steady increase in the level of government support all schools receive.

Click here to read the full media release.

New Report Helps Debunk Myths on School Sectors

A new Centre for Independent Studies (CIS) report that underlines the similarities between Australia’s three school sectors – Catholic, government and independent – is helpful to inform discussion on school funding policy, the National Catholic Education Commission has said.

The One School Does Not Fit All report examines how educational choice in Australia has developed over two centuries and points out that attempts to stereotype the three sectors are misguided.

Click here to read the full media release.

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