Package to ensure Gonski loadings used effectively

Gary Zadkovich
Deputy President

The package fulfils an undertaking given by the Minister.

An equity funding support package to inform school planning and reporting is to be sent to schools this month.

The package was jointly developed by Federation and the Department of Education and Communities to ensure additional Gonski funding allocated through the NSW National Education Reform Agreement (NERA) for students who are Aboriginal, from low socio-economic backgrounds, with limited English language proficiency or with disability is used effectively to improve their learning outcomes.

The support package fulfils an undertaking given by Education Minister Adrian Piccoli in June 2014 when he wrote in response to the Federation’s request for rigorous accountability to ensure Gonski funding achieves its purpose.

Mr Piccoli stated: “We clearly share a determination to ensure the educational experiences and the achievement of outcomes for these students are at the same levels as the overall student population. As such, I have asked the Department of Education and Communities to work closely with the Federation as an accountability framework for funding loadings under the NERA is developed.”

It is pleasing to report that Department and Federation officers have worked positively and productively to develop a support package that requires schools to plan, act and review on the following basis:

Before any money is allocated or spent, schools are to determine strategies and expenditure in line with Department policies, consult widely with staff, parents and community groups such as the local Aboriginal Education Consultative Group, and utilise appropriate support materials, staffing, resources, expert advice and examples of outstanding practice and programs.

After implementing strategies that utilise the increased funding for students with additional needs, schools are to evaluate and report on the degree to which student outcomes have been improved.