Skip navigation

Fully Funded and Free Public Schools

In a deepening cost of living crisis, more and more families are being hit hard by out-of-pocket school expenses.

Persistent underfunding of the public school system is penalising teachers, parents and carers and wrecking the futures of millions of students.

Only 1.3% of public schools receive the minimum funding they need from governments. Meanwhile, governments are overfunding 98% of private schools. It doesn’t make sense.

Right now Queensland parents are having to spend thousands of dollars in fees and resource costs every year.

This is because Queensland Labor has let our schools become some of the most underfunded in the country, and the federal government has failed to step in. Funding for Queensland state schools is falling short by $1.7 billion every year. This means fewer teachers, fewer resources for kids and more out-of-pocket expenses for families.

But we have a rare opportunity to change this – the school funding agreement between the state and federal governments is just about to be re-negotiated for the next five years. Write a letter to your State and Federal Education Ministers to tell them to fully fund our state schools.

New Schools for Brisbane's West Side

What's also clear is that the underfunding of our public schools has led to a lack of investment in new schools to meet our growing populations. Classrooms are full, pool and library time is limited, before and after school care services have long wait lists and demountable classrooms are being erected on school ovals, encroaching on students’ play area. The west side is growing rapidly, and we need long-term planning and infrastructure to keep up with development and densification.

The Greens and I are calling for two new schools on the west side.

Firstly we're calling for a new primary school in the inner west (read more about that campaign here). And secondly, a new high school in the Moggill-Bellbowrie area. This latter would not just mean that the roughly 1500 high school aged students in that area have a high school they can get to easily, but it would also reduce traffic on Moggill Rd as less families need to drive up to Kenmore State High and Indooroopilly State High.

I have written to the Education Minister and organised an email campaign to put pressure on the Qld Labor government to deliver this new school, but so far Labor is dismissive of the needs of the community. Watch this space for more action on this front soon!

Education for all

Underfunding means fewer teachers, crowded classrooms, fewer resources, and more out-of-pocket costs for families.

And for families of neurodiverse children, the difficulties caused by government underfunding are even worse. I recently hosted a community meeting to hear from families across Ryan about their kids experiences at our local schools. Families told us how school underfunding means students with a disability aren’t receiving adjustments and supports, are told to go home early, or are placed on part-time education plans. Families told us about their ADHD kids getting suspended for behaviour that could have been avoided if proper adjustments were made earlier. They told us how their children were being segregated from other kids because schools didn’t have enough funding to hire appropriately trained and skilled staff. Our kids deserve to thrive and parents should not have to beg for funding for accommodations or support. 

I have written to the Education Minister and called for her to commit to fully funding our State-schools and to back our teachers through better pay, smaller classrooms and to back our kids through real cultural change in Queensland Education to make sure it is truly inclusive for all. Truly inclusive education recognises the right of every child to be valued as a learner. This involves ensuring that there is full participation in general education through inclusive teaching approaches and learning environments. All kids deserve to have the education they need and frankly, it's not good enough that Queensland is lagging so far behind.

Get in touch if you want to hear more or if you'd like to share your story with us!