State schools in Queensland will share in $131 million in funding in 2014 to help ensure children meet national standards for literacy and numeracy.
Queensland’s state schools will share $131 million this year to meet national literacy and numeracy benchmarks.
The federal funding, promised in December last year, will see primary schools get an extra $99 million.
The money will mainly be spent on students from prep to year 2, which equates to about $508 extra per student.
High schools will get $30 million and specialist schools the remainder.
Principals and communities will decide the best way to spend the funding.
Premier Campbell Newman says the debate over the Gonski education review has been left behind.
“Today we see real outcomes, every school will be better off under this plan,” he said.
“We want to see the money at the coal face. I don’t want to see it frittered away, but spent on essentials.
“We guarantee to Queensland parents that your child will meet minimum national standard or your school will have a plan for your child to get to that minimum standard.”
Under the agreements, schools will be accountable for improving student performance.
They will be able to hire specialist educators to provide additional support, pay for professional development for teachers, or buy new literacy or numeracy learning tools.
The plan was welcomed by The Gap primary school principal Peter Cooper who says it will make a significant impact on kids in the lower years.
“We will be working closely with parents and staff to maximise those learning outcomes for all kids, those that are achieving well and those that need extra support,” he said.
Queensland Teachers Union president Kevin Bates also welcomed the initiative.
He says giving money directly to schools to spend how they want will achieve the best results.
But he wanted to see a funding commitment beyond 2014.
Queensland is expected to get an extra $794 million in education funding from the Abbott government over four years.
Federal Education Minister Christopher Pyne said the initiative would be supported by a further $131 million in federal money in 2014 through the coalition government’s Students First schools policy.
“We will provide this additional funding with no strings attached because we recognise Queensland’s education authorities know how to invest in their students’ education,” Mr Pyne said.
He said 1233 state schools in Queensland would be better off because they would receive their current level of funding plus a share of the $131 million.