Canberra, Australia, Nov 7, 2018 / 17:10 pm America/Denver (CNA).
Catholic schools in Australia have secured an increase in funding from the government following an outcry from Catholic leaders, but some Australians have been questioning the Church’s tactics in securing the funding.
In July, the socioeconomic status review board in Australia announced changes to their methodology to measure more precisely parents’ capacity to pay for schools. The new methodology would use parents’ tax information rather than geographical census data.
This new model could lead to a $74 million a year funding increase for Catholic schools from 2020 onward.
This model replaces a controversial 2017 funding model put forth by then-education minister Simon Birmingham. He delivered a funding package in that would end special deals and create one funding system for all schools, public and private, The Guardian reported. That model would have resulted in funding increases for schools in some areas, but in others, such as the Australian Capital Territory, it would have deceased funding by nearly two percent.
Catholic leaders, including Archbishop Peter Comensoli of Melbourne, reportedly objected to the funding plan at the time, and parents in several districts holding elections received warnings in the mail of possible fee increases and school closures. Several members of the Australian Labor party expressed worry that any cuts to Catholic education would cost them votes in their districts.