Baillieu confronted with his legacy on education

Evidence of the damage that the Baillieu Government’s cuts to education have created in Bendigo has been presented in Parliament by Labor as part of the Opposition’s ongoing campaign to fight the cuts.

Shadow Minister for Education James Merlino said the Labor Opposition had presented several questions to both the Premier and Education Minister Martin Dixon.

“Today Labor presented Ted Baillieu with exactly what hardworking Victorians are saying about his Government’s $555 million cuts to education,” Mr Merlino said.

“Mr Baillieu and Mr Dixon heard that their decision to cut EMA and Reading and Recovery tutors was having a severe impact at Huntly Primary School in Bendigo.

“When we asked Mr Baillieu why he was making it harder for Huntly Primary School staff and the families who send their children to school there, he failed to answer.

“Whether it’s the Education Maintenance Allowance, VCAL, the School Start Bonus, Fresh Fruit Friday or the School Focused Youth Service, principals and families are bearing the burden right now.”

Member for Bendigo East Jacinta Allan said the campaign to fight Mr Baillieu’s cuts on education had received a strong response.

“Since students went back to school last week, Labor has been meeting with parents and teachers and discussing the impact these cuts are having on them and their families,” she said.

“Today we presented to the Premier just a few of the 500-plus responses we have received across the state to our ‘No More Cuts’ petition.

“Combined with the fallout from the $300 million cuts to TAFE and the Baillieu Government’s absolute inability to strike a deal with teachers on pay and conditions, it’s clear that Ted Baillieu is not working on education.”