Care about education and your children's future? Not sure who committed what this election campaign?
We are here to help. Recap the major education commitments from both parties below:
Child care costs
Education's political football this election campaign has surely been over childcare costs.
The cost of childcare for many families has become an increasing burden, as more parents return to work full time to offset higher cost of living.
However, stories of one parent choosing to sacrifice his or her career because of out-of-control child care expenses, making it financial unviable, are becoming more and more common.
The Coalition overhauled the child care subsidy in July 2018, marking one of the biggest overhauls to the system is has seen for many years.
The Morrison Government has also pledged to invest "a record" $8.6 billion into child care in 2019-20.
"Child care fees are a significant cost of living pressure for many families. When Labor was last in government, child care fees increased by over 50 per cent," the Coalition's policy document reads.
"Since our changes, child care is more accessible and affordable, with out of pocket costs for families falling by 8.9 per cent since our child care package began."
However, one of Bill Shorten's flagship election promises this year has been a commitment to increase access to the child care subsidy for even more families and boost the amount families receive.
A Shorten Labor government has pledged to ensure every family in Australia earning up to $174,000 per annum will get cheaper child care.
Labor's plan for cheaper child care is:
- Families with kids under five years old on incomes of up to $174,000 will, on average, be $26 a week - $1,200 a year - better off per child.
- The vast majority of families earning up to $69,000 will get their child care completely free - saving them up to $2,100 per child per year.
The nearly $4 billion investment in the sector would be funded through tax changes for the "top end of town."
"A Shorten Labor Government will deliver massive cost of living relief for nearly one million families struggling with the costs of child care," the policy document reads.
"Labor can pay for cheaper child care for working families because unlike Scott Morrison and the Liberals, we aren't giving bigger handouts to the top end of town."
Vocational education and training
Labor will fund more TAFE courses and remove fees for some vocational education courses under a plan announced by leader Bill Shorten.
Bass Labor MHA Ross Hart said the policy would help bolster the workforce in key industries such as manufacturing and aged care and put Northern Tasmania on a good footing to take advantage of potential markets such as the defence industry.
The plan will see upfront fees scrapped for 100,000 TAFE students nationwide and force companies to make sure one in every 10 workers is an apprentice on any Commonwealth project.
The policy is anticipated to cost $470 million over four years and $708 million over a decade.
In addition, a $3.5 million cash injection has been pledged by Labor to bring TasTAFE's Alanvale campus into the digital age.
The funding package was announced by Bass Labor MHA Ross Hart and federal Labor Opposition Education spokesman Andrew Giles at Alanvale on May 8.
"Under this government TAFE has been attacked, it has been used as the poor cousin of other private sector operators, who, at times, have ripped off students," Mr Hart said.
"We know that TAFE needs some love, it needs investment."
The funds would be used to improve the "digital infrastructure" which was described by Mr Hart as "not fit for purpose" for the training qualifications for enrolled nurses, aged care and disability services.
Federal VET Minister Michaelia Cash said the Hodgman and Coalition Governments were looking after skills education.
"Labor's record on skills education, particularly apprentices, is one where Bill Shorten as Employment Minister oversaw the biggest ever annual decline in apprentice numbers," she said.
"For young Tasmanians, only the Hodgman and Coalition government has their skills education interests at heart, with the Hodgman Government signing up to the Coalition's $1.5 billion Skilling Australians Fund, to create new training opportunities for young Tasmanians."
The new subsidy under the Australian Apprenticeships Incentives Program (AAIP), which came into effect on January 1, will support eligible new Australian apprentices in areas such as plumbing, mechanical, electrical, painting trades and hairdressing.
Ms Cash said under the subsidy, eligible employers will be able to receive payments based on the apprentice's relevant award wage rates.
"Subsidies will be provided at 75 per cent of the apprentice's award wage in the first year, followed with 50 per cent in the second year and 25 per cent in the third year."
Public school funding
In the budget, the Coalition confirmed $21.4 billion will be spent across schools in Australia, including state schools, Catholic schools and Independent schools.
There is also $8.6 billion for child care (as above) and $17.7 billion for the university sector.
The government will establish a local school community fund, which will provide $200,000 to each federal electorate to support priority projects in local schools that benefit students and their communities.
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Major funding commitments for public schools include:
- $30.2 million in 2019-20 to establish the Local School Community Fund to support priority projects in local schools that benefit students and their communities.
- $9.5 million over four years from 2019-20 to establish new online courses and resources for the teaching of mathematics and phonics.
- $4.0 million in 2018-19 to assist schools impacted by the recent flooding in North Queensland.
- $5.0 million over three years from 2019-20 for Life Education Australia to develop a new range of free training resources to help teachers support the social and emotional needs of students.
- $5.7 million over five years from 2018-19 to fund the delivery of arts programs through Music Australia, The Song Room, a mobile music education program and Bell Shakespeare.
- $2.0 million over two years from 2019-20 to increase the public's understanding of Australia's democracy and political system by supporting the next stage of development of the Australian Constitution Centre at the High Court of Australia in Canberra.
However, Labor has promised to provide an extra $14 billion for public schools to "deliver the biggest school investment in Australian history."
Bill Shorten has declared "every student in every public school will be better off under Labor's plan.
"Labor can pay for better public schools because unlike the Liberals, we're closing tax loopholes for the top end of town and making multinationals pay their fair share," he said.
During the election campaign, Labor launched a new website for each school to find out how much more it would receive in funding if Labor wins the election.
The funding calculator says schools in Bass will receive an average of $12 million more if Labor wins the election. Schools in Lyons are promised to receive an extra $8.5 million.
A Shorten Labor government will introduce a new two-year national preschool and Kindergarten program, guaranteeing around 700,000 Australian children a year will be able to access subsidised preschool.
"For the first time, every three year old in Australia will be able to access 15 hours of subsidised early childhood education, so they can get the best start to learning," their policy reads.
Labor will also extend the current arrangement for four-year-olds accessing preschool - "creating a quality, two-year program to support the most important years of a child's development, an investment of an additional $1.75 billion into early education."
An existing commitment for 15 hours of subsidised preschool will continue under a Morrison Liberal Government, and ensure children have the best start to their schooling years.
The government has committed $449.5 million over the two years to 2019-20 to extend the partnership agreement and $4.9 million to improve preschool data that is available nationally.
It will also fund The Smith Family to work with state and territory governments and disadvantaged communities to improve preschool participation rates.
The plan is similar to a pilot program underway in Launceston and instigated by the Tasmanian Government to provide access to preschool for children in disadvantaged areas.
The Coalition will fund several higher education initiatives including:
- Investment in higher education - more than $17 billion each year with a renewed focus on regional Australia.
- Creating more than 80,000 new apprenticeships and investing more than $3 billion in annual funding for vocational education.
- Investing $15 million for Teach for Australia to train high achieving teachers who will become high quality school leaders in rural, remote or disadvantaged schools.
Labor has committed to improving the wages for childcare sector workers.
Bill Shorten announced he would fund pay increases of 20 per cent to early childhood educators over 8 years -supporting workers and delivering professional pay.
As a result - the average total wages of early childhood educators will increase by an estimated $11,300.
He pledged to do this in his first 100 days as the country's next Prime Minister - if he wins the poll on May 18.