Member for Western Victoria, Gayle Tierney has called on the Baillieu Government to immediately reinstate education funding as families feel the impacts of education program cuts at the beginning of the school year.
Ms Tierney said families had missed out on assistance with purchasing school books for their children, uniforms, transport costs and excursions after two years of savage cuts.
“These are fundamental necessities that every child needs to give them the best opportunity to learn and participate fully in their schooling.
“Whether it is the Education Maintenance Allowance, VCAL, Fresh Fruit Friday, the School Start Bonus or the Youth Focused School Service, the Baillieu Government’s cuts are hurting the schools and families that need it the most.
“Some families who previously relied on assistance through the Education Maintenance Allowance may simply have to say to their children that they will miss out on one or a number of excursions this year.
“Other families may not have the money up front to purchase all books needed for the school year,” Ms Tierney said.
However, it is not just Victorian families bearing the brunt of these cuts, schools right across the state are dealing with tens of thousands of dollars worth of black holes in their budgets caused by the Baillieu Government.
“Schools have been forced to cut programs to help cover the costs of the cuts.
“In the last two years, the Baillieu Government has slashed $555 million from education and a further $290 million from TAFE.
“It is disgraceful that students who are most at risk are the ones increasingly bearing the brunt of the Baillieu Government’s ‘cost saving measures’.
“Our children shouldn’t be the victims of Ted Baillieu’s attacks on education,” Ms Tierney said.