Canberra Islamic school funding revoked

Canberra Islamic school funding revoked

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 Federal funding has been stripped from the Islamic School of Canberra amid governance and financial management concerns.

The Islamic School of Canberra has been stripped of its federal government funding over concerns about independence, governance and financial management.

The school has been locked in a funding tug-of-war with the education department since November 2015 and after failing to meet various standards and expectations its public cash flow will now cease on July 1.

“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,” Education Minister Simon Birmingham said on Friday.

The $1 million provided by the federal government, which will cease on July 1, represented 80 per cent of the school’s operational costs.

These conditions centred around improvements to governance and financial management and required regular reporting on progress in making the required changes.

“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.”

The school has 30 days to request a review of the latest decision.

The Islamic School of Canberra first lost its funding in April 2016 following an investigation into its finances and connections with the Australian Federation of Islamic Councils.

It later had the money reinstated provided it met strict conditions and reporting requirements – demands Mr Birmingham has argued were not met. The school has previously denied this.

A number of Islamic schools in other states connected with the Australian Federation of Islamic Councils have also lost their funding.

The Islamic School of Canberra is still registered by the ACT government and may continue to operate.

The Islamic School of Canberra and the ACT government have been contacted for comment.