Australian Journal of Education

Article Title

'Unhelpfully complex and exceedingly opaque': Australia's school funding system


Australia's system of school funding is notoriously complex and difficult to understand. This article shines some light on this issue by describing clearly the processes of school funding that currently exist in Australia. It describes the steps taken by federal and state governments to provide over $30 billion each year to government and non-government schools. The article argues that more can be done by both levels of government to imple- ment a consistent and transparent allocation process. Greater consistency and transparency in this area would improve efficiency (by understanding better the impact of school resources on student outcomes) and equity (by understanding bet- ter the level of real need in individual schools, and funding appropriately). As such, it is a worthwhile goal.