School Operations' Grant Formula Being Looked At

  • Wyatt Creech

"The School Trustees' Association's work on school operations' grants will be fed into a Government review of the structure of the grants," Education Minister Wyatt Creech said today.

"I have been concerned about whether the operations' grant formula is working well for all schools. The Ministry of Education has been reviewing the funding formula to see if it can be improved.

"I have asked the Ministry of Education to make certain the STA research is part of the review. The Ministry will continue to consult with the Association and other groups about the structure of the grant, and will report back to me with any recommendations for change," Mr Creech said.

"The Government has worked hard over recent years to build confidence in schools about funding levels.

"We regularly look at the operations' grant funding and in the past three Budgets there have been increases. In 1996 it was increased an average of 4%, in 1997 it went up again, by 5% and in 1998 by another 2%.

"These increases mean the amount schools get in real terms for their day-to-day running costs is well ahead of the amount they got in 1990. This funding is over-and-above the extra for other matters such as special education, teacher professional development, and the Fully Funded Option.

"There is an emerging consensus that the overall level of school resourcing is in a healthy state. There are however still some individual schools facing difficulties, but throwing more money at them is not always the answer. The challenge is to make certain that the money going in gets the most value. The School Trustees' Association research will help as we work out how to meet that challenge," Mr Creech said.