Question to the Minister for Education

Ms GRALEY (Narre Warren South) — My question is to the Minister for Education. I refer the minister to the comments of the Premier, who said following the cuts to Victorian certificate of applied learning (VCAL), ‘We believe that VCAL can continue to flourish without the coordination fee’. I ask: will the minister explain to the house how VCAL will continue to flourish given Narre Warren South P-12 College has had to drop 50 places because of the government’s $125 000 cuts to VCAL?

Mr DIXON (Minister for Education) — I thank the member for her question.

As I said in my first answer, and I think in the second one as well, more schools are taking on VCAL. A total of 27 schools have taken on VCAL since the changes were made to the funding and the coordination funding was no longer made available, because the growth in funding that reflects the growth in the number of students taking up VCAL is improving. We have more schools taking it on, we have more students taking it on and the funding has increased. The school may have made that decision, but what has happened is that our schools have the autonomy to make the decisions about where they want to put their funding. In Victoria more schools and more students are taking on VCAL.