“We congratulate Victorian Education Minister James Merlino and shadow minister Nick Wakeling for their support of key amendments by Rachel Carling-Jenkins MLC to the Victorian Education and Training Reform Amendment (Funding of Non-Government Schools) Bill 2014,” FamilyVoice Australia research officer Ros Phillips said today .
“These leaders have ensured that funding will continue for non-government schools, whose voices will be heard on the Minister’s Advisory Council.
“We understand that the meaning of ‘reasonable conditions’ in the bill’s wording will not undermine the fundamental principles of non-government schools, including faith-based schools.
“We extend special thanks to Dr Rachel Carling-Jenkins of the Democratic Labour Party, whose efforts to improve the bill have made such a difference.”
Dr Carling-Jenkins has told concerned parents that after intense negotiations with the Minister, her campaign for fairer and unbiased funding of non-government schools has been successful and all the major principles she put forward have been agreed to.
“Yesterday, Thursday 26 February, Minister Steven Herbert, on behalf of the Government and the Education Minister, made the following statement in Parliament,” she said.
“The Government will consult with Independent Schools Victoria and the Catholic Education Commission before imposing any conditions on funding. This consultation would occur through the Advisory Council. This consultation will specifically raise the issue of reasonable conditions and will confirm that the government’s intention is not to impose any conditions that would intentionally oppose any of the fundamental principles, objectives or governing laws of the non-government schools under consideration for funding or their parent organisations.”
Dr Carling-Jenkins said that the hundreds of individuals, schools and organisations who emailed Victorian MPs can take heart that their efforts have not been in vain. She expressed sincere thanks to all who had taken the trouble to convey their concerns.
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