Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull says Labor is trying to pay for schools with “fantasy money”.
It comes more than three weeks after the Federal Government announced it would increase its school funding offer by $18 billion over a decade.
Opposition Leader Bill Shorten argued the Government would be spending $22 billion less than Labor promised when it was in office.
But the Prime Minister described Labor’s approach as “phoney” and “a fake”.
Mr Shorten told his caucus the Turnbull Government wanted “a medal or a prize” for not leaving school funding at the level offered in former prime minister Tony Abbott’s 2014 budget.
He said the ALP’s commitment to schools was reflected by the choice of Deputy Leader Tanya Plibersek as education spokeswoman.
“A cross between Fidel Castro and Kevin Rudd, he went on and on and on for 14 minutes to his unfortunate crew,” Mr Turnbull said.
“I wonder under Labor’s parallel universe of fakery and fraud who gets more money?”
The Federal Government will need crossbench backing to pass the changes in the senate.
The Gonski needs-based education funding reforms are based on every student receiving the same amount of funding with extra top-ups for those who additional assistance.
Peter McKay, a principal at the Paralowie School in Adelaide, told ABC News his school would lose $1.4 million over the next two years from the amount Labor offered when in office in 2013.
“We have programs in place that support Aboriginal students, students from non-English speaking backgrounds and students with disabilities,” Mr McKay said.
“We are a very complex school — we’re one of the most disadvantaged in South Australia. So, what we’ve been able to do with the Gonski money is put in a whole range of programs that support all of those students,” he said.
The principal reportedly based his numbers on the current funding agreements signed in 2013 when Labor was in office.
The Government schools will receive an extra $18 billion over the next decade, when compared to its previous budget.