Page 3346 - Week 09 - Wednesday, 20 August 2008

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If re-elected, the Stanhope government will continue to take steps to attract and retain the best teachers in Australia. This means paying the best and most experienced teachers a six-figure salary and providing enhanced career progression based on experience and training. I have already committed to this publicly and will work to achieve this through the negotiation of the next teachers EBA.

The school movements survey also finds that 68 per cent of parents cited school facilities as a reason they moved their children into public education. We all know on this side of the chamber that an important part of ensuring quality education is giving students and teachers quality environments in which to learn and work. That is why the government is investing over $350 million—more than any other ACT government, and per capita, for students in the ACT public education system, more than any other jurisdiction in Australia, and more than the non-government sector in any other jurisdiction in Australia. There is one government in Australia investing record amounts in quality facilities.

That is what we need. We need the best teachers teaching in the best classrooms. That is how we get the best outcomes for our education system. We want the best teachers in the best classrooms in the best schools. That is how we get the best outcomes.

While the Liberal opposition—and Mrs Dunne in particular; it is probably why she was sacked as education spokesperson—has criticised this investment as throwing good money after bad—

Mr Mulcahy interjecting—

MR BARR: And the parents agree. This survey demonstrates that. It indicates that parents and carers see the benefits of quality facilities for their children’s education and cite this as a reason that they move their children into public schools.

The government has a very proud record of investing in education to ensure that every student, no matter which school they attend in the ACT, has access to quality education. We have done this by investing in facilities, by investing in reduced class sizes in the early years and by investing in and attracting the best teachers to the ACT public education system and providing them with professional development, a plethora of work experiences and career paths that enable teachers to grow professionally and make them want to stay teaching in the ACT education system.

This survey again indicates that parents and carers agree with these investments and that the Stanhope government is on the right track, investing in better schools, better classrooms and better teachers.

Ms Gallagher: I ask that all further questions be placed on the notice paper.

Supplementary answer to question without notice

Schools––early childhood

MR BARR: Yesterday, Dr Foskey asked me about the refurbishment of schools, and most particularly whether anything could be reused or recycled. I can confirm that, for the new early childhood schools, there was minimal material that could not be reused or recycled. All equipment was assessed in accordance with normal departmental

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