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Monday, 3 June 2013
Page: 4784


Mr PERRETT (MoretonGovernment Whip) (14:26): Speaker, I ask a supplementary question. The Treasurer has spoken about increased school funding. How would schools in my electorate of Moreton and in other parts of my state be affected if the Queensland government does not sign up to this funding agreement?

Mr SWAN (LilleyDeputy Prime Minister and Treasurer) (14:26): I do thank the member for Moreton, because there are 45 schools in the electorate of Moreton with 21,000 students, and because the Leader of the Opposition has thugged the Premier of Queensland, they are now going to miss out—

The SPEAKER: Order! The member would withdraw the—

Mr SWAN: I do withdraw. But, of course, as we know, there are students right across the state of Queensland. We have the electorate of Brisbane, where there are something like 47 schools, and 25,000 students will miss out.

Mr Christensen: Finish your last line!

Mr Dutton interjecting

The SPEAKER: Order! The member for Dickson is warned!

Mr SWAN: And there we have up in Dawson tens of thousands of students who are going to miss out. The fact is that we need a world-class funding system—

Mr Fletcher interjecting

The SPEAKER: Order! The member for Bradfield is warned!

Mr SWAN: to make sure that every child across our country gets the best possible start in life.

And, of course, politics has intervened. The Leader of the Opposition is saying to state premiers, 'Don't sign up!' just like he is saying to the Queensland government, 'Don't sign up to the Cross River Rail,' because he thinks it is in his political interests. And the losers here are the families right across Australia—

Mr Tudge interjecting

The SPEAKER: Order! The member for Aston is warned!

Mr SWAN: who will not see this sort of funding increase that they deserve to see.

In Queensland there is the loss of billions of dollars each year, and per school. If you go to a school in the electorates of Brisbane or Moreton, that is something like $2.5 million each over the next six years. That is the loss to education in Queensland: a huge loss right across the country, and all because the Leader of the Opposition puts his political interests over the interests of Australian schoolchildren.