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Monday, 13 February 2017
Page: 672


Senator McGRATH (QueenslandAssistant Minister to the Prime Minister) (16:16): I seek leave to make a short statement.

The DEPUTY PRESIDENT: Leave is granted for one minute.

Senator McGRATH: School funding under the coalition is at record levels and continues to grow—from $16.1 billion in 2016 to $20.2 billion in 2020. There are no cuts. Despite total school funding doubling in real terms from 1987-88 to 2011-12 and continuing to grow in real terms at 27.1 per cent, Australia's student performance in international literacy and numeracy tests has declined. That is why the coalition government is making sure its future school funding is needs based and is conditional upon practical, evidence based classroom reforms such as early literacy and numeracy assessments and phonics teaching that help improve student results.

Question agreed to.