Page 1489 - Week 04 - Thursday, 26 March 2009

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(5) Refugees or asylum seekers can access concessions on water, spectacles, taxi and life support (Rebate on electricity account for electrically-operated life support equipment as prescribed by an ACT medical practitioner)

People on a temporary resident visa can access available concessions if they hold a Centrelink pensioner concession card or a Centrelink Healthcare Card.

People on a Centrelink pension can access concessions for water, energy, sewerage, life support, general rates, transport, motor vehicle, drivers licence and spectacles and the taxi subsidy. People on a Centrelink Healthcare card can access concessions on energy, water, life support, transport, motor vehicle, drivers licence and spectacles and the taxi subsidy.

People receiving ABSTUDY are eligible for student fares on ACTION buses, life support rebate and the taxi subsidy scheme.

(Question No 42)

Ms Hunter asked the Minister for Education and Training, upon notice, on 11 February 2009:

(1) Has the ACT Government received the $250 000 from the Commonwealth for the School Languages Program.

(2) How will the ACT Government be allocating this money to schools.

(3) What guidelines are there for the use of this money.

Mr Barr: The answer to the member’s question is as follows:

(1) Funding arrangements for Commonwealth Government programs have changed and the School Languages Program funding as such does not exist any more. It has been rolled into the general National Education Agreement funding and at this stage the amount of funding for languages has not changed. This funding is for public schools only.

(2) Funding is used to provide a Languages Curriculum Executive Officer who supports ACT public schools in the implementation of languages programs. Ninety thousand dollars or 32% is provided to the ACT Ethnic Schools Association to support community language programs for students who attend both public and non-government schools. Sixty thousand dollars is used for grants to ACT public schools and the balance is distributed to individual language networks to run language-specific, professional learning workshops. There are eight languages currently taught in ACT public schools: French, German, Italian, Spanish, Chinese, Indonesian, Japanese and Korean.

(3) There are six strands in the National Statement and Plan for Languages Education in Australian Schools. As agreed to by the Ministerial Council for Education, Employment, Training and Youth Affairs, expenditure of funds has been required to be reported on against the strands, which are:

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