Northern Territory Government Newsroom

Uibo calls for a fair deal for Territory kids

Minister for Education, Selena Uibo, today expressed disappointment that the Federal Government school funding announcement yesterday does not include any additional funding for government school students.

The special deal announced by the Prime Minister yesterday will provide an additional $4.5 billion Australia-wide to the non-government school sector.

As a contrast Territory Government schools will have to transition to a lower level of funding from the Commonwealth under the new arrangements – an estimated cut of $150 million over the next decade.

The Territory Labor Government is re-investing in our children and our teachers with this year’s record, $1.14 billion in education budget.

This includes $366 Million from the Australian Government with more than half of their contribution already earmarked for non-Government schools.

There are a disproportionate number of disadvantaged students in the Northern Territory, the vast majority of these students attend government schools.

In the Northern Territory, 44 per cent of all government school students are Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander, compared to 7.0 per cent nationally.

More than 40 per cent of students in government schools in the Northern Territory reside in remote or very remote areas compared to 2.5 per cent nationally.

Nearly half of Territory government students are in the lowest quartile of the Index of Community Socio-Educational Advantage

38 per cent of government students in the Northern Territory have language backgrounds other than English compared to 24 per cent nationally.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Education, Selena Uibo.

“It is important that all schools in the Northern Territory are adequately funded based on the needs of their students. Providing additional funding for non-government schools while cutting $150 million funding to public school students shows that the Prime Minister has completely abandoned the principles of fairness and equity to achieve a quick political fix.

 “We know the Territory has higher levels of disadvantage and higher costs for service delivery, especially in our remote schools, and I invite the Prime Minister to come to the Territory and visit remote Government schools to see firsthand our unique context and challenges. 

“Unlike the Federal Government we will always invest in education because giving every child the best start in life is not just the right thing to do, it is the smart thing to do, and the best thing for the Territory’s future.”

 

Media contact: Kim Stephens 0417 683 144