News

Education bill not legally binding

THE Federal Government will not be legally bound to action by its bill to reform school education funding, which was introduced in parliament on Wednesday.

Among the aims for the bill was to enshrine education as a citizens' right; improve the funding formula for school students and deliver the government's National Plan for School Improvement.

Prime Minister Julia Gillard said the Australian Education Bill 2012 would commit the government to reforming the school funding formula.

But a clause in the bill said it would "not create any legally enforceable rights or duties", instead relying on tense negotiations between the Federal Government and the states to ensure change is actually delivered.

The bill was unusual in that it did not outline any funding for the reform itself or the education system; did not create any legally enforceable rules or regulations and did not technically create any new laws.

Despite the bill not legally ensuring the government does take action, it does create a legal framework to ensure the negotiations that were already under way between the federal and state government were completed by the end of next year.

The framework centres on a number of "principles" that any reform of school funding should take, but also does not say exactly what the reforms should be.

Ms Gillard said the bill would also lead Australia to be among the top five countries in the world for reading, writing and mathematics by 2025.

The government's own deadline for that target comes despite no funds being allocated in the Federal Budget to the reforms until 2020 - leaving just five years to deliver the full suite of changes.

Ms Gillard said the bill was a "truly national plan" for a matter of the greatest national import.

"No matter how rich or poor your parents are, the school you attend or the circumstances of your birth, our nation should provide a core level of support to your education," she said.

"There should be Australian Government support to educate every Australian child - in the poorest and most remote school - at the best known and best resourced school."

But Opposition Education spokesman Christopher Pyne said the bill was "spin over substance", labelling it a "Labor hoax".

"There is no detail of what the states will pay, no structure and no information about the new stringent requirements the Federal Government intends to impose on schools," he said.

"Labor has introduced an empty shell this morning as a desperate distraction.

"No one in the schools sector will have any clearer picture of what the Government is proposing."

Topics:  bill, education



Better health outcomes through consumer participation

Council member Nick Ryan, DDHHS Chief Executive Dr Peter Gillies, council member Belinda Marriage, council member Cecilia Donohoe, DDHHS Board Member Marie Pietsch, DDHHS Acting Executive Director Medical Services Dr Martin Byrne, DDHHS Indigenous Cultural Capability Consultant Rica Lacey, and DDHHS Acting Consumer Engagement Officer Pauline Murphy at the inaugural meeting of the DDHHS Consumer Council in Toowoomba.

Consumer Council holds it's first meeting in Toowoomba.

New bridge honours cherished Southern Downs resident

Signs for the newly named bridge will now be installed with the cost to be funded from the bridge budget.

The recently constructed Tummaville Rd bridge has been named.

Traffic disruptions on major Warwick road this morning

Workmen close one lane on Albion St, Warwick.

WORKMEN have blocked one lane of a major Warwick road this morning.

Local Partners

9000 reasons to support our community clubs

Community clubs are good at what they do. They are not so good at telling the world about what they do, as Clubs Queensland CEO Doug Flockhart explains.


Katy Perry gets naked to encourage people to vote

Katy Perry in Funny Or Die sketch

Katy Perry has stripped naked for a comedy video

Jogging Tom Hanks crashes wedding in Central Park

Tom Hanks stopped for a selfie with this bride and groom

MOVIE REVIEW: Storks delivers family fun

A scene from the movie Storks.

ANIMATION can be hit or miss but when it hits, it hits hard.

Nick 'the snake' to call the shots on Survivor jury

Australian Survivor contestant Nick Iadanza.

LATEST evictee is out of the game but will still have a say.

Naomi Watts and Liev Schreiber split

Naomi Watts and Liev Schreiber

Naomi Watts and Liev Schreiber have split after 11 years together.

Why Chris Hemsworth was spotted wearing nail polish

RED CARPET: Do you think Chris Hemsworth is the typical unpolished but well-natured Aussie bloke?

He's now officially the best bloke in Australia

$40million hotel, shops development project for Mackay

Mt Pleasant hotel and retirement accommodation, proposed at 194-202 Malcomson St.

$40m development to take Mackay to 'the next level'

Rural properties expected to soar as investors seek income

Rural properties are should become highly sought after

Property 200m from ocean selling for just over $100K

BEACHCOMBER PARK: Work has started on a new $19.2 million development at Toogoom.

The estate's developer is offering huge discounts for early buyers.

UPDATE: Former rodeo champ's sale rained out, now back on

Larkhill local Ken Consiglio is having an auction of most of the things on his property.

'People kept showing up and we had to turn them away'

First stages of $25 million housing development underway

New development on Madsen Rd - The Springs.

The blocks of land are much bigger than usual

Couple build their own 'tiny house' for $45k

Holly Bowen and Oli Bucher built their "tiny house" themselves, only hiring a plumber and an electrician. Photo/supplied

The house, which is built on a trailer and can be towed.