Education State: More Help For Struggling Students

The Andrews Labor Government is making Victoria the Education State by investing $72.3 million to help secondary school students who are falling behind their classmates to catch up.

For the first time in Victoria, secondary schools will receive targeted funding to help students catch up as part of the Education State package that is providing $747 million in extra funds over four years to deliver great schools for every community and great teachers in every classroom.

Through this new catch-up boost, an additional $72.3 million will be provided to schools to help around 9,500 students who have fallen behind academically. The funding will be provided over four years and $21.8 million will be provided in ongoing funding from 2019-20.

The extra funding will flow from the start of the 2016 school year. Schools will receive the boost in their annual budget for each student who has not met acceptable learning benchmarks in Year 5 NAPLAN. It will be provided regardless of the student’s personal background or the level of disadvantage in a school.

Schools will be given guidance and support to implement evidence-based teaching and other activities tailored to specific challenges facing their students, such as one-on-one numeracy support or targeted coaching.

The catch-up boost, combined with extra funding the Government is providing to help schools with kids from lower socio-economic backgrounds, equates to a more than 70 per cent increase in funding allocated for disadvantage and low achievement.

The 2015/16 Victorian Budget was the single biggest injection of education funding in Victorian history by providing almost $4 billion in additional funds. We are building and upgrading schools and helping families with the costs of uniforms, glasses, camps, excursions and more.

Our Budget built the foundations of the Education State, but the next step is all about helping our kids learn, giving parents confidence, and giving teachers the resources and skills they need to do what they do best.

We need to focus on strong school leadership, better teaching, more collaboration between teachers and schools, and resources targeted at student need – all of it backed up by expert advice and robust evidence.

Over the last few months, thousands of Victorians told us that our schools are ‘good’. The system isn’t broken, but more work needs to be done. We must take our schools from good to great, and we must support the kids who need extra help.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino

“We’re making Victoria the Education State. Schools will get extra funds next year, billions will build buildings and improve young lives, and our curriculum will be amongst the most comprehensive in the world.”

“Students who fall behind academically struggle to catch up. This is about giving kids more help to get back on top of things and complete school.”

“This catch-up boost will help ensure that every child, no matter their circumstances, gets the support they need to have the best opportunities in work and life.”

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