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




Can you help? Orphaned triplets cared for by grandparents

A HANDFULL: Kayla, Dianne and Geoff Benn with the triplets Sam, Emily and Tom.

Triplets left orphaned, now being raised by grandparents

UPDATE: One woman remains in hospital after van crash

Eight females were taken to hospital after van crash

Latest deals and offers

Mariah Carey: I 'can't believe' Prince has gone

'Prince was one of the best people I've met'

Joe Jonas' 'tough' pals

Joe Jonas' pals are 'tough' with his potential partners

The Bachelor wash up: bacon, plank offs and that white rose

Richie Strahan, second from left, with bachelorettes Eliza, Faith, Noni and Janey in a scene from episode one of the fourth season of The Bachelor.

RICHIE Strahan meets some beautiful, and colourful, bachelorettes.

What's on the big screen this week

Matt Damon in a scene from the movie Jason Bourne.

MATT Damon returnx in the spy thriller Jason Bourne.

MOVIE REVIEW: Goldstone sure to become Aussie classic

Aaron Pedersen and Alex Russell in a scene from the movie Goldstone.

DIRECTOR Ivan Sen and Aaron Pedersen reunite for Mystery Road sequel

You can own this Queensland town for just $1

Yelarbon

Unprecedented auction of town's business centre with no reserve

Work starts on $15M Caloundra apartment building

Turning the first sod at the Aqua View Apartments site in Kings Beach are (from left) husband-and-wife developers Alex Yuan and Stella Sun with construction company Tomkins director Mike Tomkins and Councillor Tim Dwyer.

Developers excited about addition to Kings Beach skyline

72-year-old Coast developer set to start new project

GREEN LIGHT: The Cosmopolitan has been approved for development at Cotton Tree.

Meet the Canberran set to deliver another chapter for Coast suburb

Plans revealed for 1500-lot 'master-planned community'

Precinct will be bounded by Boundary St and Shoesmith Rd

Ecco Ripley sales run sparks prime release

MOVING IN: Sekisui House has announced the release of more residential blocks at Ecco Ripley.

Sekisui House is preparing to unveil more land at Ecco Ripley

The climb is slow but property on the way up

Michael Matusik, director of Matusik Property Insights.Photo Allan Reinikka / The Morning Bulletin

The improvement would be mild when compared to past cycles