Media Release: Coalition Education Funding Plans Miss the Mark for Government Primary Schools (May 3, 2016)

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The Australian Government Primary Principals Association (AGPPA), the national body for primary principals at government schools, is calling for the government to fulfil its obligation to provide and maintain well-resourced quality public schools, available to all, in every community.

The Quality Schools, Quality Outcomes paper released by the Minister for Education and Training, Simon Birmingham claims to be supporting a strong and sustainable schooling system.

However the report demonstrates a clear reduction in funding and no support of the highly credible Gonski Review. AGPPA believes the recommendations provided by the Gonski funding model provide a fair and visionary approach to supporting students, regardless of their circumstances, to achieve to their potential. AGPPA is committed to a fully resourced, needs based funding model which meets the criteria set by the Gonski Review. Ms Leigh AGPPA President said, “Gonski provides a once in a generation opportunity to make a difference for all learners, particularly primary students, that cannot afford to be missed.”

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The proposed performance pay for teachers based on student achievement goes blatantly against current research that says performance pay does not have a positive correlation with student outcomes. AGPPA sees merit in further conversations around linking remuneration to the Teaching Standards and providing the necessary funding to support teacher professional development.

AGPPA is gravely concerned about further national assessments for each year as stated in their policy document. “This means more tests and distractions from valuable learning time” Ms Leigh said.

Many one off projects proposed in the paper lack detail of how they will interface with the states.

The paper offers vague detail on Certification of Practising Principals. AGPPA believes there is an increasing need to provide scaffolded induction, training and development for school leaders that meets the current and future needs of the profession and will continue to work with AITSL Professional Principal Standards to achieve high quality schooling.

AGPPA believes there needs to be an equal level of resourcing for every student P-12 with additional funding according to need.