The government’s plans to introduce bulk-funding to schools, and to ditch equity funding in ECE, will meet strong resistance in coming months.

Today, PPTA and NZEI member leaders announced the two professional organisations will work together to oppose the government’s radical changes to school and ECE funding.

Bulk-funding for schools will incentivise school leaders to run bigger classes with fewer teachers. It will also foist complex administration onto school boards and principals, which will disadvantage schools in lower socio-economic areas who may be unable to attract lawyers and accountants to their boards.

Under the plans, decile funding would go and be replaced by targetted funding to a much smaller group of students who have, for example, parents on benefits. However, schools would not know the identity of the students who attract the extra funding.

ECE centres and kindergartens would also lose equity funding, which will have a greater impact on community-owned centres and kindergartens, which receive a much higher proportion of this funding than for-profit centres. ECE has had a five-year funding freeze, which has led to increasing pressure on the sector. Equity funding would be replaced by funding to a much smaller group of ‘targetted’ students, although centres will not know who these students are.

The joint Better Funding Better Learning campaign will include paid meetings for all members in September. Schools and centres will receive formal notification, as required by law, in the next few days by mail.

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