Principal News – Week 6

Mrs Mary Anne Evans

Mrs Mary Anne Evans

Friday 26th May, 2017 marked the inaugural NEGS K-12 Athletics Carnival, and it did not disappoint. The weather was glorious; the spirit – uplifting; and the marching – exceptional. I would  like to acknowledge the inspiring way in which the School was led by our Year 12 students. They are acutely aware that time is nigh, and as this was their last School Athletics Carnival, they made the most of the event.

As is always the case, days like these do not occur without the countless hours of preparation and to that end I would like to publicly thank Mr Josh Cohen, Mrs Michelle Wilsmore and Mrs Helen Smith, for a job well done.

As NEGS is moving to a new technology package throughout the School, there have been the inevitable teething problems. To that end, there have been some hold ups with cohort reporting. We appreciate your patience whilst these glitches are ironed out. If you are concerned about any of your daughter’s impending results, please contact her individual teachers for the necessary information.

A topical subject at the moment is of course school funding. For your interest, Phillip Heath has made the following observations on how funding is derived.

Independent schools (like NEGS) receive funding from State and Commonwealth Governments. The two bodies use slightly different formulas and have slightly different results.

The Commonwealth Government uses the SES score. The figure is calculated by creating an average of the Socio-Economic Status (SES) of every family enrolled at the School. The SES derives from census collector district data that attempts to estimate a family’s approximate level of resources based on census data gathered from a district or cluster of residential streets. The higher the SES score, the lower is the level of funding from the Commonwealth Government. These scores are publicly available on the My School Website.

The State Government prefers to retain the old ERI (Education Resources Index) model of funding, which placed schools in categories from 1 to 12 and is based not on parent SES but on school resources.

Complicating this further are the special arrangements entered into during previous election campaigns. There are different (higher) funding provisions for some Catholic systemic schools. There are also Funding Maintained schools, which receive their old level of funding prior to the new SES system and converted to 2017 dollars. It is these schools that are referred to as being “overfunded”, however these schools are funded at the rate at which the regulations permit, not a penny more or less.

If you wish to see more, go the link below and enter a school’s State and name. It makes for interesting reading: https://www.education.gov.au/sites/education/files/sch/calc/index.html

The new policy seeks to remove the special arrangements that have grown up over the past decades and place all schools on a level field so that a clearer determination about “needs based” funding can be established. It is a positive move but we should not underestimate the impact this may have on some schools. Whilst no one wants to see schools lose any funds, we all seek a fair minded and transparent system that will provide public resources where they are needed.