Bligh announces $2b school trust
IT'S coming 15 years earlier, but there will be stringent eligibility criteria if you want to get your hands on it.
Premier Anna Bligh visited Parkhurst State School at North Rockhampton yesterday to announce how the $2.5 billion Mines to Minds - Queensland Education Trust would be set up if Labor wins the election on March 24.
Year 12 students graduating in 2015 will be the first to be able to access a $4000 scholarship fund, which will be funded by 50% of the liquefied natural gas mining royalties the government will collect.
However, the funds will have to be spent solely on education or training.
The funding can be used to attend education institutions outside Queensland.
Ms Bligh said there would be a rigorous eligibility.
"We expect the bulk of the money to be spent here in Queensland," she said.
"If you don't use it, it will go back into the fund.
"Four thousand dollars is a good balance between an incentive and something that can be afforded."
Ms Bligh said almost 3000 people made submissions online and people attended consultation sessions across the state in the past five months.
"We've brought forward the benefit (of the LNG royalties for Year 12 graduates) by 15 years," she said.
Ms Bligh said the second component of the QET, the Today grants to support strategic education investments, would see $10 million allocated this year.
Ms Bligh said the first two years would be funded from GST revenue, which had been accommodated within the State Budget, while still bringing the budget back to surplus early.
"Within 15 years, that will be a self-funding part of the trust," Ms Bligh said.
Tomorrow Scholarships of $4000 for every Year 12 Queensland graduate going on to university or training
Scholarship to be available from 2015
Accessible until age 25, meaning students can take a gap year
Further education doesn't have to be in Queensland
Scholarship funds will either be forwarded to education institution, refunded after receipts are produced, or other proof funds to be/have been used for education or training purposes
Today grants to support strategic education investments, with $10 million to be allocated this year