Consultation on Education reform to be extended

Published Monday, 15 April, 2024 at 04:32 PM

Minister for Education and Minister for Youth Justice
The Honourable Di Farmer

  • Minister Di Farmer has announced changes will be made to the Education General Provisions Amendment (EGPA) Bill, to avoid unintended consequences.
  • One of the key changes will include further consultation with all stakeholders around Student Disciplinary Absences (SDAs) and to regulation involving home schooling.
  • The decision follows feedback from industry.

Minister for Education Di Farmer today announced the government will be engaging with more stakeholders as it makes changes to a number of aspects of the draft EGPA Bill, currently before parliament.

The Minister has made this decision following extensive feedback from industry that the proposed changes could lead to unintended consequences.

Education stakeholders have indicated that more work needs to be done in regard to Student Disciplinary Absences (SDAs) and regulation around home schooling in Queensland.  Therefore, those provisions will be withdrawn from the Bill and not progress at this time.

To progress further reforms around SDAs, stakeholders from all sides will come together, to chart a way forward, listen to each other’s perspectives and make sure young people are at the centre of any reforms.

Schools are increasingly complex environments. There is a need to make sure that our most vulnerable children are supported.  However, it is also important to recognise that teachers and school leaders are facing increasing challenges. 

It is critical that the government works with education stakeholders to get the balance right by providing educators with the tools and resources they need to make sure these students receive the best education possible. 

The Miles Government has already announced a comprehensive package of supports through the $288m Youth Engagement Package, including:

  • Intensive education case management
  • Specialised alternative learning programs
  • First Nations engagement programs
  • 50 new FlexiSpaces in schools
  • Six new campuses for the successful Queensland Pathways state College

More supports are on their way through Putting Queensland Kids First with further announcements to follow.

A Home School Advisory Group will be established to consider in detail how to gain greater certainty around how Queensland children are receiving a high-quality home education.

The Department’s Home Education Unit (HEU) will also be reviewed in light of the growing number of home schooled children. The government respects the right of parents to home school and will look to provide the appropriate support required by parents.

Quotes attributable to Premier Steven Miles:

“Our teachers in Queensland are critical to ensuring our kids get the best start in life.

“While committee consultation was underway, I heard from a lot of teachers who felt like the proposed changes weren’t going to help them do their jobs. 

“I have always said I will listen to Queenslanders and act when I need to, which is why I worked with Minister Farmer to ensure we heard the concerns of teachers. 

“I look forward to seeing updated consultation proceed.” 

Quotes attributable to Education Minister Di Farmer:

“I want to make it clear that while there are many aspects of the proposed Bill that I fully support, there are a number of aspects that clearly need more time to work through to avoid any unintended consequences.

“I have listened to education stakeholders who have made it clear both through the committee process and through ongoing meetings I have been having with them, that more work needs to be done.

“I am committed to bringing together all sides, in order to understand the differing perspectives around SDAs to help design a pathway forward, putting young people at the centre.

“I will also be establishing a Home Education Advisory Group to consider in detail how we ensure children being home schooled are receiving the high quality education.

“Additional, a review will commence into the role of the Home Education Unit to how best it can help not only better regulate, but provide important support to families who choose to home school.

“All Queensland children are entitled to be safe wherever they live and learn and as a former Child Safety Minister I understand too well that this is not always the case.

“I want to thank all stakeholders for their passion for education and these amendments will affect the future education of thousands of young Queenslanders so it’s important that we get them right.


MEDIA – Tim Auguston 0427 090 563