“Today, my department has written to the school authority responsible for the Islamic School of Canberra, to inform them that their approval for access to Federal funds has been revoked with effect from 30 June 2017 (end of Term 2).
“This means that the Islamic School of Canberra will no longer be receiving Australian Government funding from 1 July 2017.
“It is disappointing that after the number of chances this school has been given and the constructive work the Department has been doing with the authority since November 2015 that the school has still failed to meet the standards and expectations placed on them.
“This decision has not been taken lightly. However the Department was left no choice. The school authority is not meeting the strict conditions placed on them on 29 August 2016. These conditions centred around improvements to governance and financial management and required regular reporting on progress in making the required changes.
“School governance should be of the highest standard and funding should be exclusively used for the education and welfare of students. The Australian Education Act 2013 requires, amongst other obligations, that all school authorities operate not-for-profit, be financially viable, be a ‘fit and proper person’, and ensure that funding provided is used only for school education. All school authorities in Australia are required to meet these requirements in order to receive Australian Government funding.
“Schools receive significant taxpayer funding. Australians rightly expect that every taxpayer dollar committed to school education is genuinely expended on school education and for the benefit of students.
“My Department’s concerns centre on the Islamic School of Canberra’s independence, financial management and governance arrangements.
“With this decision, our attention now turns to working with the students and their families, the teachers and the whole school community about how we best support them through this difficult time.
“My Department has been working with their ACT counterparts on how we minimise the impact this decision may have on the school community.
“While this is a difficult time for the school, I remain committed to ensuring that all school authorities meet the requirements of the Education Act to ensure that our taxpayer dollars and any private investment by parents is being spent to benefit Australian students.
“The approved authority has 30 days to seek a review of this decision.”