How is Australian Government funding for schools distributed according to need?

Fact sheet

Australian Government recurrent funding for schools is based on the Schooling Resource Standard (SRS). This funding is passed onto Approved Authorities who are responsible for the administration and operation of schools. For government schools, the approved authority is the relevant state or territory. For non-government schools, the approved authority is the body corporate approved by the Minister for the school.

The Australian Education Act 2013 (the Act) recognises that Approved Authorities are best placed to understand the individual needs of their students and schools. Approved Authorities for more than one school are able to distribute the Commonwealth funding they receive among their schools in either of two ways:

  • according to the Schooling Resource Standard (under subsection 78(4) of the Act); or
  • by choosing to redistribute that funding among its individual member schools according to their own needs-based funding arrangements (under subsection 78(5) of the Act).

Approved Authorities that redistribute funding in accordance with subsection 78(5) of the Act are known as Approved System Authorities and are required to make their needs-based funding arrangements publicly available and transparent.

To find out more information about your school, its Approved Authority, and the funding it receives please visit the MySchool website.

Government Approved System Authorities (State and Territory Governments)

For government schools, the approved authority is the relevant state or territory government. All states and territory governments redistribute funding between members schools according to their own needs-based funding arrangement, as per subsection 78(5) of the Act.

System nameNeed-based funding arrangement
ACT Education DirectorateStudent Resource Allocation
Department for Education, Children and Young People TasmaniaEducational Adjustments Funding Model
Department of Education New South WalesResource Allocation Model
Department of Education Northern TerritorySchool Resourcing Model
Department of Education QueenslandState Schools Resourcing Framework
Department for Education South AustraliaResource entitlement statement (RES) funding information for schools and preschools
Department of Education VictoriaStudent Resource Package
Department of Education Western AustraliaStudent-Centred Funding Model

Catholic Approved System Authorities

The following Catholic Approved System Authorities redistribute funding between members schools according to their own needs-based funding arrangement, as per subsection 78(5) of the Act.

NameNeeds-based funding arrangement
Catholic Education Archdiocese of Canberra and GoulburnNeeds-Based Funding Arrangement
Catholic Education Northern TerritoryDistribution of recurrent government funding
Catholic Education TasmaniaNeeds-Based Funding Arrangement
Catholic Education South AustraliaNeeds-based funding
Catholic Education Western AustraliaRecurrent Funding Allocation Model
Catholic Schools NSWThe Needs-Based Funding Arrangement for the NSW Catholic Schools System
Queensland Catholic Education Commission

Queensland Catholic Education Commission’s (QCEC) Group Funding Guidelines

In addition, each Diocese provides information on its own funding distribution:

Victorian Catholic Education AuthorityAllocating government grants to Catholic schools in Victoria

Independent Approved System Authorities

NameNeeds-based funding arrangement
Al Faisal College LimitedNeeds-Based Funding Arrangement Distribution Arrangements for Al Faisal College Ltd System
Albury Wodonga Community College Limited (‘Indie’ School)Indie School – Needs Based Funding Approach
Anglican School Commission (Southern Queensland)Overview of Needs-Based Funding Distribution Principles
Anglican Schools Commission (Western Australia, New South Wales and Victoria)Resourcing Anglican Schools Corporation Schools: Government Funding Distribution     
Anglican Schools CorporationDistribution of government recurrent funding in Anglican Schools Corporation
Australian Islamic College (Perth) Inc – PerthNeeds Based Funding Model
Australian Islamic College (Perth) Inc – AdelaideNeeds Based Funding Model
Autism Spectrum Australia (ASPECT)ASPECT Needs Based Funding Arrangement
Ecumenical Schools AustraliaEcumenical School Needs Based Funding Agreement
Lutheran Education South Australia, Northern Territory and Western AustraliaNeeds-Based Funding Distribution
Lutheran Church of Australia Queensland DistrictOverview of Needs-Based Funding Distribution Arrangements
Lutheran Church of Victoria, New South Wales and TasmaniaNeeds-Based Funding Distribution Principles
NT Christian SchoolsOverview of Needs-Based Funding Distribution Principles
Newcastle Anglican Schools CorporationNeeds-Based Funding Distribution Principles
Pacific Group of Christian Schools LimitedNeeds-Based Funding Arrangement
Seventh-Day Adventist Schools North NSW LimitedSDA Schools (NNSW) Ltd – Needs-Based Funding Arrangement
Seventh-Day Adventist Schools South Queensland LimitedSeventh-day Adventist Schools (South Queensland) Ltd Needs-Based Funding Arrangement
Seventh Day Adventist Schools (South New South Wales) LimitedCommonwealth Recurrent Grant Implementation Policy
Seventh Day Adventist Schools Victoria LimitedRedistribution of Commonwealth Recurrent School Funding
Swan Christian Education AssociationNeeds-Based Funding Allocation Model
St Philip's Christian Education Foundation LimitedSt Phillips Christian Education Foundation Needs –Based Funding Arrangement

Independent Approved Authorities for more than one school

These Approved Authorities distribute funding according to the SRS with no reallocation between member schools, as per subsection 78(4) of the Act.

Christian Community Ministries LtdThe Tamworth Christian Education Association Limited
Trustees of the Christian BrothersThe Council of St Andrew's Cathedral School
The Presbyterian Church New South Wales Property TrustFSAC Ltd
The Uniting Church in Australia Property Trust (NSW)Campbelltown Anglican Schools Council
Christian Schools TasmaniaAustralian Industry Trade College Ltd
The Uniting Church In Australia Property Trust (Q)Carey Baptist College Inc
Christian Outreach CentreWesley College Melbourne
PARED LtdThe Salvation Army (Qld) Property Trust
Mercy Education LimitedAustralian International Academy of Education Inc
The Presbyterian and Methodist Schools AssociationTrustees of the Marist Brothers
Youth Off The Streets LimitedTrustees of the Christian Brothers (Queensland)
Christian Aboriginal Parent-Directed SchoolsThe Council of the King's School
The Trustees of the Sydney Grammar SchoolSeventh Day Adventist Schools Western Australia Limited
The Baptist Union of Queensland- Community Services GroupSeventh-Day Adventist Schools (Tasmania) Limited
The Trustees of Edmund Rice Education AustraliaSeventh-Day Adventist Schools (Greater Sydney) Limited
Royal Institute for Deaf and Blind ChildrenSeventh-Day Adventist Schools South Australia Limited
Illawarra Association for Christian Parent Controlled EducationWinifred West Schools Limited
Summerland Christian Life Centre LtdSouth Australian Anglican Schools System Incorporated

Note: The Department is currently working with Approved System Authorities to develop a shared understanding around needs-based funding arrangements under section 78(5) and the applicable legislative requirements. This is based on recommendations from the National School Resourcing Board’s Review of Needs Based Funding Requirements.

For further information about Approved System Authorities’ Needs Based Funding arrangements contact the relevant authority.