Naysayers face tough talks

Parents play key role in Gonski campaign

Kerri Carr

Politicians prepared to stop Gonski funding will face stiff opposition from parents, whose child's education has benefited from the extra dollars

A kindergarten child receiving Gonski-funded assistance has spoken his first sentence, NSW Education Minister Adrian Piccoli has told the Legislative Assembly.

“As one can imagine, his mother wept,” Mr Piccoli said.

The Federation President Maurie Mulheron said: “I find it extraordinary that some politicians would be willing to face a parent to say we will no longer be funding the Gonski model that has made so much difference to your child’s life.”

Mr Piccoli said that on a visit to Quakers Hill Public School the child’s mother had shown him a video on her phone where her son says: “Hi Mum, I love you. Good night.”

“That is not exceptional for most children, but it is a life-transforming moment for Fred. Indeed, it is a transformational period for Fred’s mother, father and brother, thanks to the additional dollars invested in the school and the great work done by the school staff to support the children.”

Mr Mulheron said: “When we bring the Gonski story down to the individual level, as the Minister did in parliament, behind the dollars are real children and real stories of success.”