Gonski decision angers principals

SCHOOL principals are outraged at the Abbott government’s decision to dismantle the Gonski funding reforms.

Kellyville High School principal Justina Barnier called Education Minister Christopher Pyne’s decision to scrap the reforms a ‘‘disaster’’.

‘‘What we finally have is the ability to plan ahead and fund programs and target resources where they are needed,’’ she said.

‘‘This is my 31st year as a teacher and I was just breathing a sigh of relief, and to now hear that Christopher Pyne is looking at changing that it is just a disaster.’’

Mr Abbott said before the election that ‘‘we will honour the agreements that Labor has entered into’’.

Ms Barnier said his government’s decision not to honour the reforms was as contemptuous as Julia Gillard’s decision to implement a carbon price after saying she would not.

‘‘(The Coalition) destroyed Julia Gillard over the same thing,’’ she said.

Parramatta North Public School principal Kathryn Methven said it was disappointing that  reforms created after years of research would be scrapped.

Mr Pyne said a new system that funded each state more equally would be negotiated with the premiers.

Mr Abbott said funding would equal the Gonski plan.


■ NSW schools could lose about $2 billion over the next six years;

■ NSW Education Minister Adrian Piccoli said schools at all levels, from state and private sectors, would be worse off;

■ NSW Teachers Federation president Maurie Mulheron said Mr Pyne was rewarding the ‘‘belligerent’’ states that did not sign up to Gonski;

■ Mr Pyne said the Labor government had taken $1.2 billion from Queensland, Western Australia and Northern Territory education when they did not sign onto Gonski.

■ What do you think?

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