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School Choice Endorsed as State Parliament Passes Non-State Schools Legislation

11 August 2017

School Choice Endorsed as State Parliament Passes Non-State Schools Legislation

Independent Schools Queensland (ISQ) has welcomed new legislation which streamlines the approval processes for non-state schools while maintaining strong accountability and education standards.

The Education (Accreditation of Non-State Schools) Bill 2017 was passed with bi-partisan support in State Parliament last night.

ISQ Executive Director David Robertson said independent schools strongly supported a refresh of the 15-year-old Act governing the accreditation and regulation of non-state schools in Queensland.

“The new Act strikes the right balance between accountability and school autonomy,” Mr Robertson said.

“It streamlines the approval processes for non-state schools. In particular it has removed a key piece of red tape by marrying together what used to be two separate processes for accreditation and funding eligibility,” he said.

“This is a key change independent schools have long advocated for. Under the new Act, when a non-state school meets the criteria for accreditation it will automatically be approved for government funding. Under the old Act, funding eligibility was a separate process.

“This change confirms the right of every student in an approved not-for-profit school to receive government support for their education.”

Mr Robertson acknowledged and thanked Queensland Education Minister Kate Jones and Members of Parliament for their strong endorsement and support for non-state schools and the contribution they make to their local communities.

“Members of Parliament who spoke on the Bill were strongly supportive of school choice. They were also glowing in their praise of their local independent and Catholic schools and the contribution they make to student educational outcomes.”

The non-state schooling sector, which comprises independent and Catholic schools, educates about 266,000 students at more than 500 schools, representing about one third of all school-age children.

 

Media Contact: Justine Nolan 0428 612 315 or jnolan@isq.qld.edu.au

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