Friday, 23 February 2018 06:25

Union pledges to fight cuts to public school funding

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The Australian Education Union claims the Coalition Government has cut $1.9 billion from public schools and hundreds of millions more from TAFEs and pledged to fight against these cuts.

The claims of cuts come at a time when there is a push to get more students into studying science, technology, engineering and mathematics, in a bid to bolster the ranks of skilled workers.

The AEU will hold its annual conference today and its federal president, Correna Haythorpe, said while both Opposition leader Bill Shorten and Greens leader Richard Di Natale would speak at the event, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull had not responded to an invitation to attend.

Turnbull is in the US at the moment, but it appears that the government has not chosen anyone to attend in lieu.

“Today’s conference is about planning for the funding fight ahead. Malcolm Turnbull has cut $1.9 billion from public schools and hundreds of millions from TAFE,” claimed Haythorpe.

“We will be discussing the impact of these cuts and our plans to ramp up our public school funding campaign in the year ahead. Of the $2.2 billion Malcolm Turnbull has cut from schools in the next two years, 86% will be cut from public schools. Principals, teachers, support staff and students will see the direct impact of these cuts."

She described Turnbull as the prime minister for private schools, adding, "He has walked away from public schools, only allocating 20% of federal funding to public schools."

Haythorpe said Turnbull’s cuts to public schools were cruel and catastrophic. "Big cuts require a big response and our members are ready for action. We won’t stand by while the Turnbull Government fails to fully fund public education."

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Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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