Baillieu Government must support disadvantaged students

Federal Member for Isaacs, Mark Dreyfus has condemned the Baillieu Government for scrapping the School Start Bonus and School-based Education Maintenance Allowance payments, calling on them to be immediately reinstated.

Federal Member for Isaacs, Mark Dreyfus has condemned the Baillieu Government for scrapping the School Start Bonus and School-based Education Maintenance Allowance payments, calling on them to be immediately reinstated.

The Baillieu Government's cuts to the Education Maintenance Allowance will affect some of the most disadvantaged students in Carrum Downs and Skye.

"These cuts to education will devastate those local families who need the most support," Mark Dreyfus said.

"It means low-income families will have less money for essential items such as uniforms, textbooks, stationary and excursions, and comes on top of cuts already made to VCAL and the TAFE system."

The Gillard Government understands that families are feeling the pinch right now, and has introduced the Schoolkids Bonus to help them make ends meet.  

"From 20 June this year, over 9,000 families in Isaacs will start receiving payments so parents have extra money to help pay for school expenses.

"We are also supporting disadvantaged students through the $1.5 billion Low SES National Partnership which is funding reforms in leadership, teaching and learning in 1,700 school communities, including ten schools in Isaacs."

The Gillard Government is ensuring that every Australian child has access to a world-class education and has already invested over $65 billion in schools over four years.

This includes:

  • $2.4 billion for the Digital Education Revolution which has delivered a computer to every student in years 9-12;
  • $2.5 billion for the Trade Training Centres in Schools program, including the $19 million Frankston Trades Training Centre; and
  • $16.2 billion under the Building the Education Revolution program for 24,000 projects at approximately 9,500 schools, including over $100 million invested alone in Isaacs.

Federal Labor will continue to invest heavily in education, having already allocated $13.6 billion in the 2012-13 Budget for school, early childhood and youth programs.

"The Labor Party believes in the transformative power of education to bring people out of poverty and create opportunity."

"I call on Premier Baillieu and Education Minister Martin Dixon to respond to the challenges facing low-income families and support disadvantaged students to make sure they get the best opportunities they can."