Almost twice as many students at public schools come from low income families as from high income ones.
An analysis prepared for the Australian Education Union by Barbara Preston Research shows government schools had a nearly equal share of students from high and low income families in 1986. However, by 2011 the proportion of public school students from low income families was almost double the share from high income ones.
The research shows that students from low income families are increasingly concentrated in public schools while those from high income families are increasingly concentrated in private schools.
The analysis shows government schools educate about 64 per cent of all students, but about 75 per cent of all students from families with a weekly income of less than $1249. Catholic school enrol about 22 per cent of the nation’s students, but just 16 percent of the students from low income families, while independent school enrol just 10 per cent of these students despite educating 15 per cent of all students.