AUSTRALIA: The Australian government has come under attack from teacher unions over its increased spending on private schools and reduced outlays on government schools.
An analysis of the second federal budget of conservative prime minister John Howard reveals an increasing switch in Commonwealth spending from the public to the private school sector. Despite claims by federal schools minister Dr David Kemp that the government will allocate Pounds 7 billion to schools by the end of the decade, state schools will lose increasing amounts of Commonwealth funding. Private schools will benefit.
The Commonwealth also announced that it had shut down the Australian Language and Literacy Council and was reducing spending on the National Languages and Literacy Institute. Both encouraged schools to tackle literacy and teach languages other than English.