commitment to an immediate injection of $3.3 billion into public schools in the first three years of government is especially welcome, and a game changer for schools that have been waiting for these funds. We need all political parties to put public schools first. We welcome the Greens’ commitment to ensure that all schools reach 100 per cent of the SRS, as well as Labor’s commitment to work with state and territory governments to bring SRS funding for public schools up to 100 per cent. Our public school communities are the heart of the Fair Funding Now! campaign. These people have stood up for public schools and reached out to help. Fair Funding Now! is reaching back. It is these parents and school staff that my colleagues and I are looking forward to meeting as we head out across the nation on our Fair Funding Now! van tour. From this week our van tour campaign teams will visit communities in marginal electorates across Australia to inform parents and voters of the multi-billiondollar public-school funding cuts that the prime minister has left future governments to fix. We already know that public school funding is a key consideration for parents and their voting intentions. In a recent AEU poll held in six marginal electorates, more than eight in 10 respondents said education will be an important factor in deciding who they will vote for at the upcoming federal election. Our teams will engage with communities in marginal electorates across Australia to make this federal election the ‘education election’. We will inform people about the clear choice between Scott Morrison’s cuts to public schools and Bill Shorten’s investment in public schools. It is time to
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elect a government that will put public schools first. Our campaign teams will make sure that school communities across the country know their concerns are being heard, and help them understand how they can join our campaign and channel their passion and motivation into making a real difference for public schools everywhere. However, don’t feel you have to wait for our vans to visit your community. Now is the time to engage with the issue and join Fair Funding Now! If you haven’t already signed up, then go to fairfundingnow.org. au and join the thousands of campaign
supporters who have already committed to standing shoulder to shoulder in the fight for public school funding. The true strength of a movement is in its people. If your heart is with the fair funding of public schools then don’t wait – we need to hear from you. We will win this campaign because we are fighting for our children. That gives us all the courage to stand up against public school funding injustice, and to fight for a better future for our schools and their students. Correna Haythorpe AEU federal president.
PHOTOGRAPHY MELANIE DE RUYTER
The true strength of a movement is in its people. If your heart is with the fair funding of public schools then don’t wait – we need you.