Education groups wanting to resuscitate the Gonski needs-based school funding model have a small window of opportunity to step up their campaigns.
Save Our Schools national convenor Trevor Cobbold says the federal government has seriously sabotaged the model proposed by the former Labor government but all is not lost.
And Australian Education Union president Angelo Gavrielatos says 2014 is a critical year in the fight for resourcing.
Mr Cobbold says the government is using states' rights as a pretence to guarantee funding increases for private schools but not public schools.
He suggests a two-pronged campaign over the next six months to salvage a more equitable system.
First, the federal government should be pressured to include more funding in its May budget, he says.
The government has committed to the new system for four years from 2014, instead of the six Labor promised, and more than two-thirds of the extra money was proposed to go to schools in the fifth and sixth years, 2018 and 2019.
Mr Gavrielatos said it was vital the budget committed to all six years, plus fund a commitment to provide extra money for students with disabilities from 2015 onwards.
"That is the only way to ensure the needs of every child can be met," he told AAP.
A second campaign should put pressure on state and territory governments.
NSW, Victoria, SA, Tasmania and the ACT signed agreements with Labor to contribute more money to schools and guarantee indexation.
Mr Gavrielatos said Prime Minister Tony Abbott was acting like the agreements didn't exist.
"He doesn't seem to care enough about the needs of children to ensure the money gets to public schools, let alone is matched by those governments or distributed according to student need," he said.
Mr Cobbold said education and community organisations should join to campaign for the governments to keep these promises and for the other jurisdictions to pledge more money.
"There is some hope there because some of those governments are facing elections either this year or next year," he said.
"Particularly for the ones that have signed the agreements, it is going to look bad if they backtrack now, given the federal government's given them the opportunity to do so."