Federal Election Watch: Schools

With Australians set to head to the polls in a number of weeks, the election campaigns of both the Liberal and Labor parties are at a fever pitch. A number of issues, ranging from housing affordability and immigration to climate change policy, have already emerged as key points in this year’s federal election. 

As both of Australia’s major political parties relentlessly promote their promises online and in the media, it can be difficult to distinguish which policies will have an effect upon you. Education tends to emerge as a drawing card in many election campaigns, and it is important to know how the pledges from each party will affect your child’s current and future schooling

Whether you have already decided who will be receiving the first preference on your ballot paper, or you are still grappling with where to cast your vote, our guide to both Liberal and Labor’s education pledges may inform your choice. 

Liberal

  • $37 billion in additional funding to Australian schools over the next decade 
  • Full implementation of NAPLAN testing to improve transparency on student progress 
  • Enhanced testing of trainee teachers to ensure they are in the top 30 per cent of the population for literacy and numeracy 
  • Establishing a $1.2 billion Choice and Affordability fund for parents who choose to educate their children through the Catholic and independent school systems, adding to the $4.5 billion of funding already pledged to non-government schools over the next decade 
  • Committing to the National Schools Chaplaincy program to provide permanent school chaplains in approximately 3,000 schools nationwide 
  • Grants to establish partnerships between schools, tertiary providers and employers to develop future job skills.

Labor

  • Additional $14 billion in funding for Australian public schools over the next decade 
  • Invest $300 million to support students with special needs across Australian schools 
  • Two years of universal pre-school education for every Australian child aged three years old 
  • Establishing a Solar Schools program to help schools slash their energy bills and promote cleaner energy sources 
  • $46 million towards swimming lessons for primary school students 
  • Creating a $280 million Evidence Institute for Schools to provide schools and early childhood education centres with high quality research and strategies for improvement.

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