ACT Gov allocates $12.5m to Set Up For Success 10-year plan for early childhood
The ACT Government has announced major investments in education as it moves into the next phase of its 10-year Future of Education strategy, significantly increasing funding to “make education more inclusive, give students more of a say in their learning, support a workforce of the future and give young people the best possible start in life.”
An additional $51 million has been made available over the next four years, divided as follows:
- $12.5 million over four years to continue the ACT’s 10-year plan for early childhood education, Set Up For Success. The funds will support providers and services that cater for three-year-old children experiencing vulnerability or disadvantage. The funding will also increase the number of scholarships for an early childhood teacher degree to 12.
- More than $21 million over the next four years to ensure all year 7 to 12 students have access to a Chromebook, including an additional $2.8 million over four years to provide internet access to any secondary school student who needs it and fund a new e-safety program.
- A new $11.5 million Future of Education Equity Fund to replace the high school bursary scheme, reaching an estimated five times as many students.
- An additional 25 youth and social workers will be employed at a cost of $7.4 million over the next four years to provide early intervention and support for students and their families.
- $1.5 million for a two-year trial to provide 1,500 vulnerable students with access to free breakfast and lunch three days a week throughout the school year.
- $450,000 over the next two years to work with young people with disabilities, their families, and the broader community to review how public schools deliver inclusive education.
- $445,000 to provide ongoing free and confidential legal advice to public college students – deemed ‘particularly important’ as cases of domestic and family violence increase during the pandemic.
The package, a Government spokesperson said, will support a range of new and renewed policy initiatives to improve access, equity and inclusion for all students.
The 2021-22 ACT Budget will be officially released on Wednesday 6 October 2021 by Andrew Barr MLA, Chief Minister and Treasurer of the Australian Capital Territory, and will be made available here.