AUSTRALIAN COUNCIL FOR THE DEFENCE OF GOVERNMENT SCHOOLS
PRESS RELEASE 453
For half a century Insecure Australian parents have been told State Aid Fairy Stories
Some of the Fairy Stories:
Prime Minister Whitlam told them that if private sectarian schools received State Aid, on a ‘Needs’ basis, the ‘State Aid ‘problem would go away.
But to cement the unholy Protestant/Catholic Alliance, the Needs’ Policy was always a ‘Greeds’ policy. Inequalities have increased.
Former Prime Minister, John Howard, said that fees at many private schools would fall as a result of the increase in funding for private schools provided by his now thoroughly discredited ‘Needs’ scheme The Australian, 30 September 2000].
The former Education Minister, David Kemp, argued that the SES funding scheme would put downward pressure on school fees and make them more affordable for families: Sydney Morning Herald, 12 May 1999; tHE aGE, 29 September 2000; tHE aGE, 10 October 2000; The Age, 4 October 2001].
David Kemp even said that the scheme would have a “democratising impact” on private schools : The Age, 24 November 2000.
EDUCATION was the only essential service families devoted a higher proportion of their household budget to over the past decade of prosperity -- despite generous government handouts to cover the rising cost of sending children to private schools.
By contrast, higher power, gas and water charges did not eat into household budgets in real terms.
The findings suggest that handouts for private schools have the same circular effect as the first-home buyer grant -- the largesse doesn't ease the cost-of-living pressure on families; it reinforces it by triggering higher fees.
Federal spending for non-government schools more than doubled between 2003-04 and 2009-10. For that expenditure to have reduced real costs for families, the share of the household budget allocated to secondary education should have fallen.
Instead, it rose by 0.19 percentage points -- or more than a third -- to 0.68 per cent of household expenditure over the same period.
The more likely explanation is the good old-fashioned gouge. Private schools know the government will be there with the chequebook so they push up fees. This, incidentally, does not happen in healthcare, where the government provides fee relief for private health insurance.
The Australian has re-analysed official data from the household expenditure survey published by the Reserve Bank last week to pose the question whether handouts for private schools are yielding a good return to the household, and the economy at large. The answer appears to be no.
Trevor Cobbold of Save Our Schools Canberra on 19 December 2011 at http://www.saveourschools.com.au/funding/fee-increases-outstrip-cost-increases-in-elite-private-schools-in-victoria also revealed how
School fees in Victoria’s elite private schools are set to increase by nearly 6% in 2012. At Geelong Grammar they will top $30,000 for the first time. Several others will pass $25,000 for the first time. At the same time, they are raking in millions and millions of dollars in government funding
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