The education union has launched an advertising blitz warning voters not to trust Opposition Leader Tony Abbott’s ‘sham’ promise to match Labor when it comes to schools funding.
The Australian Education Union has placed the ads in major papers across the country, claiming voters have a ‘stark and important’ choice to make this election about the future of schools.
The ads claim an Abbott government would invest $2.8 billion in schools over four years to compared to Labor’s pledged $10 billion over six years.
After months of insisting the current funding model wasn’t broken, the coalition this month vowed to honour and match the school funding agreements entered into under Labor’s Better Schools plan.
Mr Abbott said as far as school fund was concerned, he and Prime Minister Kevin Rudd were ‘on a unity ticket’.
The AUE’s president Angelo Gavrielatos rubbished the claim, and warned parents not to be misled by Mr Abbott’s efforts to take education off the election agenda.
‘This is no unity ticket on schools funding,’ he said in a statement on Wednesday.
‘Overall, the Coalition plan for extra schools funding comes up $7 billion short.’
The union is particularly concerned by the coalition’s plan to cut short the six-year deals already signed by federal Labor and the NSW, Victoria, ACT, Tasmania and South Australian governments.
Meanwhile, the Australian Salary Packaging Industry Association has also run full-page ads against the Rudd government’s changes to the fringe benefits tax.
It says the changes mean the cost of living for thousands would increase and there’d be job losses in associated industries.