The attack on Labor’s schools policy by church leaders fails to address the real issue - massive growth in private school fund

Submitted by Editor on Wed, 29/09/2004 - 18:14

The attack on Labor’s schools policy by church leaders fails to address the real issue - massive growth in private school funding will damage public education.

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Hans van Leeuwen
hans@nsw.greens.org.au
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Media release - September 29, 2004

"If archbishops are going to wade into education policy, they should attack both the Coalition and Labor for putting the future of public education at risk," said Greens NSW Senate candidate John Kaye.

"As men of religion, they should be deeply disturbed by the idea that public schools are being relegated to safety net status. They should be sounding the alarm on the consequences for social justice and cohesion.

"Instead, the archbishops have taken a narrow view of their own interests. They are advocating solely for the growth of their own religious schools, even when this occurs at the expense of the public good.

"Archbishops Pell and Jensen need to let go of their sectional interests and concentrate on what is best for Australian society.

"The archbishops ought to be concerned that both the Coalition and the ALP are increasing private school funding by $5.5 billion over the next 4 years, while public education is starved of the funds it needs.

"They ought to be concerned that Labor is concentrating even more of these growth funds into low-fee private schools that directly compete with public education. They should be warning that this could undermine the viability and diversity of public schools with dire consequences for the education of children from low-income families.

"They ought to be concerned that Labor will continue to deliver public money to the wealthiest private schools. That is $2,000 per student per year that serves only to increase inequality," Mr Kaye said.

Hans van Leeuwen
Media Officer
NSW Greens federal election campaign
02 9519 0877
0425 310 562

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