This includes public, private and independent schools.
As a mother whose first child is going to start school in 2014, this worries me a lot.
Like all parents, I want the best for my child, but seeing decisions like these made makes me wonder if he will even get an average education experience.
Earlier this year, teen newspaper L.A Youth conducted a survey amongst teens to help identify how budget cuts across the U.S was affecting their classroom experience.
57% said that they had to copy information from an overhead projector by hand because the schools couldn’t afford to make paper copies.
64% said their restrooms were in need of repair.
Closer to home, 70% of Tasmanian public school teachers said that due to budget cuts, the ability to deliver a full range of learning programs have been affected. And another 70% think that students with disabilities will not receive the support they need.
Similarly, Victorian schools were “forced to cut music programs, abolish teacher aides, increase class sizes, cancel electives, cut specialist teachers and go into debt.”
There is plenty more evidence that slashing budgets to schools negatively impacts on both the students and the wider community. However, my concern is that my son will have to experience the same sort of things I did when I was in school back in India – copy off the blackboard/projector, use facilities that were in desperate need of TLC, forego certain lessons or subjects due to lack of resources. To avoid all this was the reason my parents decided to immigrate to Australia. So we can make use of modern learning methods, access better facilities and experience a superior quality of school life.
Now, it looks like my children are going to be subject to similar conditions or arrangements in terms of their learning experience if past budget cut indications are anything to go by.
In India, many schools ask for “donations” of thousands of dollars as part of the application process. If the government continues to cut funding to schools, I wouldn’t be surprised if schools in NSW also begin to adopt this approach by charging application fees.
Education in a first-world country is supposed to be free and world-class but by the looks of it, my son will now have similar experiences to my school life back in India.
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