State Budget Highlights 2017-18

The Victorian Budget 2017/18 invests an additional $1.3 billion to support every Victorian to learn, grow and succeed in life.

Two years ago the Andrews Labor Government made a promise that was simple but bold - to revitalise our education system and transform Victoria into the Education State.

Families and children

Every Victorian child deserves the best start in life.

All parents want their children to live healthy, happy and fulfilling lives - to be equipped to handle life’s challenges, to continue to grow and learn throughout their lives, and to be valued and supported by their community.

By the time a child starts kindergarten, the skills that will help them throughout their lives are already taking shape. At this formative stage of their development, we are taking this opportunity to help shape their life for the better.

Making Victoria the Education State starts with the early years.

The Victorian Government is embarking on a nation-leading reform plan with our early childhood sector so it can better support our kids.

The Victorian Budget 2017/18 invests $202.1 million to deliver the Education State Early Childhood Reform Plan to create higher quality and more inclusive early childhood services.

To read the plan in full, see:

Maternal and Child Health Services

Victoria’s world-class MCH service and supported playgroups are getting an $81.1 million boost as part of our Education State reforms - to help families get their kids ready for kindergarten and beyond.

The package will progressively expand the Enhanced MCH Service to include children up to the age of three, increase the availability of supported playgroups across the state and provide an additional outreach visit for families at risk of, or experiencing, family violence.

Ensuring access and inclusion in early childhood

The Education State Early Childhood Reform Plan recognises the importance of providing all families with the support they need in early childhood, so kids are ready for kindergarten and ready for school.

The Victorian Budget 2017/18 includes:

  • $7.2 million to support children with disability or developmental delay to access early intervention services in preparation for NDIS
  • $5.4 million to support Koorie parents and children.

Supporting kindergartens

The Government is giving Victorian kindergarten services an unprecedented boost in funding so that all children start school ready to learn.

The Budget includes an additional $108.4 million in funding for kindergarten services to make sure every Victorian child has access to high quality early childhood education.

This includes:

  • an extra $55.3 million so kindergartens can give additional support to the children that need it most. In an Australian first, this ‘school readiness’ funding will allow kindergartens to deliver better quality teaching and provide targeted interventions such as speech therapy, language and literacy assistance, parenting support and more time for one-on-one learning
  • $22.8 million to continue to improve quality in all services offering a kindergarten program
  • $10 million to plan and build three early childhood facilities co-located at new primary schools
  • $5 million to help children with special needs access kindergarten
  • $6.3 million to grow the Early Start Kindergarten program for vulnerable children aged
  • $2.3 million to hold kindergarten places open for families most in need
  • $5.5 million to provide a central point of contact for families to access kindergarten in their area
  • $1.1 million to encourage non-government schools to offer kindergarten programs.

School Education

A great education needs great teachers to boost student outcomes and we are investing $456.6 million in both, to make Victoria the Education State.

 Supporting our teachers 

The Victorian Government is ensuring Victoria’s teachers can make a real difference in our classrooms. The Victorian Budget 2017/18 recognises the enormous contribution teachers, support staff and principals make towards giving Victorian kids a great education and the best possible start in life.

Funding includes:

  • $23.7 million to lift the quality of teaching and school leadership, including $18.3 million to expand the Professional Learning Communities initiative to up to 200 additional schools
  • $9.7 million towards the Excellence in Teacher Education reforms to raise the quality of teaching and status of the profession, including $4.6 million to improve induction for up to 10,000 graduate teachers, as well as $3.1 million to train high-achieving candidates to work in schools in disadvantaged areas.

This complements the recently negotiated Enterprise Bargaining Agreement which puts teachers at the forefront of our school improvement agenda.

Improving student outcomes 

The Victorian Budget 2017/18 will invest $297.8 million in a range of school-based programs to help boost the skills students learn and how they learn them, as well as ensuring all Victorian students can access a great education.

Funding includes:

  • $9.2 million to support schools to teach swimming as part of the Victorian Curriculum
  • $67.9 million for better IT support for schools and students
  • $16.4 million to improve regional connectivity to better support Digital Education
  • $90 million to support the Education State in 2018
  • $19.6 million to boost teaching of English as an Additional Language
  • $7.8 million to extend the successful Navigator student re-engagement pilot
  • $1.7 million to expand Student Mentoring
  • $5.7 million to expand the availability of funding to schools accepting late student enrolments
  • $58.4 million to meet demand for the Program for Students with Disabilities in 2018
  • $21.2 million for student transport to meet increased demand for specialist school students.

The Victorian Budget 2017/18 invests $50.7 million over five years to support more than 300 of Victoria’s lowest performing schools adopt proven practices aimed at dramatically improving student outcomes.

We are also investing:

  • $5.8 million into the School Pride and Sports Fund to boost community pride in schools and sports participation.

Investing in our schools

We are building and upgrading even more schools to give Victorian kids the best start in life, with a funding boost of $685 million.

This will mean new schools and three new early childhood centres, as well as upgrades to 59 regional and rural schools, 49 metropolitan schools and six special schools.

Funding includes:

  • $265.1 million to plan, acquire land and build new schools, bringing to 56 the number of new school projects delivered over the past three years
  • $195.2 million upgrade and modernisation program
  • $75 million for new relocatable classrooms
  • $44.4 million to upgrade six special schools
  • $85 million to continue to remove asbestos from schools.

Training and Skills

The Government has already invested heavily to re-build TAFE, improve the quality of training in Victoria, appoint Victoria’s first Skills Commissioner and is ensuring training aligns to student and industry needs.

Since coming to office the Victorian Government has invested hundreds of millions of dollars into the training and TAFE system to benefit individual students, industry and communities.

These investments and Skills First build on the Government’s commitment to Victorians to have a strong, stable, high quality training and TAFE system, to develop the skills they need that lead to jobs for today and tomorrow.

Giving apprentices a helping hand

TheVictorian 2017/18 Budget invests $8.2 million for Apprenticeship Support Officers to support up to 17,500 first year apprentices each year who are at risk of not completing their apprenticeship or have become unemployed.

Supporting the Latrobe Valley

A $4 million support package will be provided over two years for workers facing transition in employment or training in the Latrobe Valley. Support will include career planning and development, job search assistance and digital literacy.

More information

For a downloadable version of this information, see:   

For more information on the Early Childhood Reform Plan, See:

For more information including the Budget papers and details of the Government's spending across all portfolios, see: