School funding revoked

The Administrative Appeals Tribunal has affirmed a Federal Department of Education and Training decision to revoke government funding of Malek Fahd Islamic School Limited.

The AAT decided that the school authority was unable to satisfy the requirements of the Education Act or be able to do so in the foreseeable future.

Concerns centred on the school’s independence, financial management and governance.

Education minister Simon Birmingham noted that the tribunal referred ‘in particular to the ongoing burden of the uncommercial arrangements with the Australian Federation of Islamic Councils’ and that ‘findings make it clear that, at a minimum, MFISL continues to be operated for profit.’

The Australian Education Act 2013 requires school authorities to operate on a NFP basis, be financially viable, be ‘fit and proper’, and ensure that funding provided is used only for school education. Schools must meet the requirements to receive federal funding.

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