Annual education investment to exceed $11b
Additional investment in early childhood education, children with special needs, and new schools and classrooms takes annual education spending above $11 billion for the first time, Education Minister Hekia Parata says.
“Education is the key to the future and this investment, at a time of low inflation, demonstrates the Government’s ongoing commitment to raising achievement for all our kids,” Ms Parata says.
Since 2008, the proportion of children participating in ECE has risen from 93.6 per cent to 96.6 per cent, and the proportion of 18-year olds with NCEA Level 2 has risen from 68 per cent to an estimated 84.4 per cent.
“Our children are starting school better prepared to learn and leaving school better equipped for adulthood,” Ms Parata says.
Budget 2016 provides additional education investment of $1.44 billion. This includes $640.5 million of operating funding over the next four years, plus $75.1 million in 2015/16 and $727.3 million in capital. Key spending includes:
- An extra $396.9 million over the next four years, plus $39.2 million in 2015/16, for ECE. By 2019/20, this will provide funding for a further 14,000 children.
- $43.2 million for schools educating students most at risk of educational under-achievement. The increase
- $42.1 million over the next four years for students with high and special educational needs.
- $882.5 million investment in school property with 480 new classrooms, nine new schools, two school expansions and the relocation and rebuilding of three schools and a kura.
“Budget 2016 directs increased education funding to where it will make the most difference,” Ms Parata says. “It continues this Government’s considerable investment in the educational future of all our children and young people.”