Possible Cuts to Our School’s Funding a Concern
9 August 2018

As Principal, I am writing with some further information about possible changes to the funding we receive from the commonwealth government. If implemented, these changes could result in a significant loss of income for the school. What is most concerning for our parent community is the

prospect of seeing an established funding formula based on socio-economic-status data derived from the Census, replaced by a complex, interventionist model that would be determined by a family’s ‘capacity to pay’. At present, what we understand to be the meaning of ‘capacity to pay’ would be based on a family’s gross income – and calculated from the personal income tax data of parents and guardians.

You will not be surprised to learn that every independent school in Australia is apprehensive about the potential impact of these changes. As a parent myself and someone who has worked in schools all her life, I know the challenges families often face when seeking to provide the best for their children. Many parents are working two or more jobs in order to pay tuition fees. This is their choice and any decision about how they allocate their private resources should be theirs and theirs alone.

It is particularly important, at this time, that Westbourne families remind their parliamentary representatives – government senators and members of the House of Representatives alike – of their commitment to the principle of ‘school choice’ and of Canberra’s recent assurance that the current funding model will be maintained.

Westbourne’s Board is very aware of this looming issue and are watching developments closely.

Our intention is to lobby all politicians, and to make application to the Turnbull government to honor their commitment that no school will be worse off.

Should you require further information or want to know how to get in touch with a Member of Parliament, please do not hesitate to contact Sue Johnston in the Development Office on: 9731 9474 or johnston.sue@westbourne.vic.edu.au.

Meg Hansen – Principal