Changes cut funds to 436 schools

More than half the public schools in WA are losing money from their budgets because of funding changes introduced on the back of this year's cuts, the teachers' union claims.

The State School Teachers Union said its analysis of how much schools would lose under the move to a student-centred funding model next year, coupled with cuts to individual school budgets at the start of this year, revealed about 60 per cent of schools - or 436 - were losing money.

Union president Pat Byrne said when this year's losses were added to projected losses for next year, the top 10 biggest losers were all high schools, including Churchlands, Kelmscott and Mt Lawley senior high schools and Kununurra District High.

Ms Byrne said it was difficult to see how schools could produce the same outcomes for students if they were losing up to $880,000 from their budgets.

"Schools are now looking at which programs they can afford to keep and which they can't," she said.

Education Department performance, evaluation and research director Peter Titmanis told parents at a WA Council of State School Organisations conference yesterday they would see some uncertainty in coming weeks as schools came to terms with funding changes.

He said bigger schools would get less enrolment-linked base funding because of their "economies of scale".

Education Minister Peter Collier said the funding model was fair and a five-year transition would ensure schools had time to adjust to their new budgets.

The West Australian

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