Future Funding for our School

Last Monday (26 May 2014) we launched the Social Ventures Australia (SVA) partnership at the school. As one of three NSW government schools chosen as a Powerhouse School in the SVA Bright Spots Schools Connection, our work as a leading secondary school in western Sydney was recognised.

The SVA partnership is one of a number of partnerships that bring support and extra funding into the school and, over the years, these partnerships have contributed strongly to a range of curricular, co-curricular and extra-curricular programs. These programs have given our students opportunities and a belief that they can succeed.

That is one reason why, at the SVA launch we featured two state award winners - Clare Da Silva who won the Premiers' Anzac scholarship and travelled to Korea for Anzac Day and Tianna Edwards who won the Zonta state prize for achievement by a young Indigenous woman. We also took pride in the induction of 30 SRC members and 80 new Year 7 Ambassadors.

As I said at the launch, "This is a great school with potential to be even better in the future."

However, there is a very dark cloud hanging over our future if the federal government cuts funding to government schools. In the federal budget and in interviews since the budget, the federal Minister, Mr. Pyne has said that "Gonski" (needs based funding) will end and that the federal government will only keep funding private schools. The state government will have to find all the funds for government schools.

Under the old rules, the federal government was going to provide extra funding for students from disadvantaged backgrounds and students with disabilities. This is called "equity" funding and is designed to help all students achieve their best no matter what their personal circumstances.

This school would have received extra funding because 46% of our students come from disadvantaged homes and we have a number of students with disabilities. In a recent article in the Sydney Morning Herald, Rooty Hill was the 13th most affected school in terms of the funds that will not be received.

All the most affected schools are in western and south western Sydney. The negative impact for our school is potentially going to mean that we will lose good teachers, have fewer resources and be unable to deliver the kinds of technology based programs that parents have come to expect in recent years.

Below is a link to a video that explains what the "Gonski" funding is and why it is important. Please take a few minutes to watch and please continue to support the school as we work to give our students and the Rooty Hill community the best education our students deserve.

In times of threats to the future of our children, we are very privileged indeed to have partners like SVA who believe in our work and who are prepared to fund the innovations we have planned.