Minister for Education, the Hon Christopher Pyne MP today welcomed the passage of the Australian Education Amendment Bill 2014.
The legislation provides an extra $6.8 million for non-government schools that have significant numbers of Indigenous boarding students from remote areas and protects $2.4 million for students with disability.
“This Government is committed to delivering fresh, practical approaches to improving the educational opportunities for all school students,” Mr Pyne said.
“Indigenous students in remote locations face extra challenges to attend boarding school so I am determined to support these students with initiatives and funding to boost school attendance and student engagement.”
“This Act means more funding for schools that currently have more than 50 Indigenous boarding students from remote or very remote Australia, or where more than 50 per cent of their boarders are Indigenous and from remote areas.
“The legislation has also prevented a sudden drop in funding from 2015 for some schools that cater for students with disability.
“Under the arrangements put in place by the previous Government some independent special schools and special assistance schools would have had their funding reduced from 1 January next year. These schools now have certainty, allowing them to move towards the student resourcing standard over time, consistent with other schools.”
These changes are in addition to the wide range of support the Australian Government is implementing for students with a disability. The Government has already introduced a funding loading to support students with disability in 2014 and this will increase by $100 million in 2015.
The Commonwealth will provide over $4.8 billion for students with disability over the next four years. This is more funding than ever before.
The Australian Education Amendment Act 2014 is an element of the Australian Government’s Students First approach, which focusses on four key areas of:
- improving teacher quality
- increasing school autonomy
- boosting parental engagement
- strengthening the curriculum.