Education is a clear winner in the Queensland Budget 2015 16, with $12.4 billion in funding provided for the vocational sector, schools and the teaching profession. Read on as we summarise the main points that will affect your child and family.
- Almost $250 million will be provided over four years to lower class sizes in Queensland schools and place an additional 875 teachers, including 275 specialists at secondary school level. Meanwhile, $14.5 million will see the provision of an additional 45guidance counsellors across secondary, combined and special schools.
- Close to $440 million will be invested in education, training, early childhood education and pre-Prep training facilities, while a further $300 million over four years is being dedicated to school maintenance, addressing a backlog of school refurbishments across the state. This is joined by a $2 million promise to begin the upgrade of water-based fire protection systems in schools.
- An additional $6 million over three years will allow for the development of an enhanced teacher classification system and pay structure, ensuring modernisation and improvement of the teaching profession.
- Non-government schools will receive $123.6 million over three years to allow for additional student places, addressing the state's growing population.
Vocational Education and Training (VET)
- TAFE Queensland will receive a boost of $34.5 million over three years, as well as ongoing funding of $500,000 a year from 2018 19, to restore its standing as the state's leading VET provider. This funding will be directed at assisting TAFE Queensland to deliver foundation courses, increase its number of VET in Schools qualifications and hire additional teaching and support staff members.
- The Queensland Government will also establish an independent Training Ombudsman to investigate complaints made by students and apprentices, helping the state to regain its reputation for quality training.
- Pushing to create a stronger workforce, $40 million will be directed at establishing Jobs Queensland. Jobs Queensland will act as an independent statutory authority and provide advice to the state government on issues such as skills demand and long-term workforce planning. Through establishing Jobs Queensland, the government hopes to strengthen the Queensland VET sector and ensure it is the strongest and most productive nationally.