3 February 2021

Education experts: “The language of school choice supports the idea that education funding should follow students to the schools they believe best fit their learning needs. Education is then managed according to the free-market dynamics of consumer choice. … School choice alternatives … divert students and funding away from comprehensive public schools. We should be concerned about advocacy for school choice models, because recent cross-national research shows increased school choice is associated with increased social stratification in terms of social class. School choice and competition tend to be associated with larger gaps between high and low socio-economic status student groups and lower student achievement outcomes nationally.” Every time the international education test results are revealed, we despair at Australia’s declining performance and the growing equity gap… and yet we never learn: “Government funding for non-government schools is still growing at a faster rate than for public schools, according to the Productivity Commission. The latest chapters of its review of government services, released on Tuesday, reveal that in the past decade spending per student on non-government schools increased by 3.3% per year compared with just 1.4% for government schools.”