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Chief Finance Officer’s report

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​The department achieved an operating surplus of $56.8 million in 2017-18​, mainly due to the treatment of school-based activities. Schools operate on a calendar (academic) year rather than a financial year basis. This surplus is against a total departmental controlled budget of $9.479 billion after taking into account the impact of the machinery-of-government changes from 1 January 2018, which transferred the training and skills functions to the Department of Employment, Small Business and Training and the Office of Industrial Relations from Queensland Treasury. System developments are being finalised to facilitate these structural adjustments.

Key investments in 2017-18 included the roll out of the final tranche of the extra teachers and additional guidance officers election commitments, continued implementation of findings from the Review of School Administrative and Support Staff, implementation of the new senior assessment and tertiary entrance systems for students entering Year 11 from 2019, as well as investments under the Building Future Schools Fund to address enrolment growth pressures in state schools and funding for the construction of new halls, upgrade existing halls and land acquisitions for new schools.

During 2017-18 the School Budget Solution was deployed to all Queensland State Schools. Further, the Promotional Positions Classification Review was progressed, including wide ranging consultation with internal and external stakeholders.

The first stage of the Leading the Management of the School project was also completed including an extensive internal and cross-jurisdictional scan of current resources available to Queensland state school principals.

Management of the Six Full Cohorts 2020 Ready program of works continued throughout 2017-18​ with Queensland State School Resourcing with ​oversight and governance of this critical program of work.

Additional resourcing initiatives for science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) expertise in Queensland state primary schools and increased information technology (IT) support officers in Queensland state schools was successfully implemented.

Following amendments to the Australian Education Act 2013 in 2017, Queensland is required to enter an agreement with the Federal Government to secure federal funding for schooling. An interim one-year agreement for 2018 was reached in December 2017, with negotiations ongoing towards a longer term agreement.

In accordance with the requirements of section 77(2)(b) of the Financial Accountability Act 2009, I have provided the Director-General with a statement that the financial internal controls of the department are operating efficiently, effectively and economically in conformance with section 57 of the Financial and Performance Management Standard 2009. As Chief Finance Officer, I have therefore fulfilled the minimum responsibilities as required by section 77(1)(b) of the Financial Accountability Act 2009.

Duncan Anson FCPA

Assistant Director-General, Finance
​Chief Finance Officer

Table 1: Financial snapshot

Controlled revenue
  Departmental services revenue7,604,8267,910,1798,350,3908,780,0988,788,389
  Other revenues755,721522,252559,808575,439623,685
Controlled expenses8,360,4448,355,6008,873,6579,326,7209,355,315
Operating surplus/(deficit)10376,83136,54128,81756,759
Administered grants (state)773,613794,329851,555848,821875,602
Capital outlays532,099344,322420,454582,017609,490
Total assets18,450,30017,665,41719,217,75220,338,60119,600,361
Total liabilities1,078,339896,7621,041,7971,206,409901,837
Net assets/(liabilities)17,371,96116,768,65518,175,95519,132,19218,698,524
Employee expenses ($000)5,934,2535,544,2655,931,0876,248,6896,600,850
Number of employees at
30 June (FTE)

Note: Due to machinery-of-government changes, Training and Skills functions transferred to the Department of Employment, Small Business and Training effective 1 January 2018, and Industrial Relations was transferred in to the department from Queensland Treasury.
Source: Department of Education.

For a comprehensive set of financial statements covering all aspects of the department’s activities, see the financial statements​ section of this annual report. No totals have been adjusted for commercial-in-confidence requirements. ​​​


Our income - where the funds come from

We received $9.412 billion for our operations, an increase of $57 million from last year, mainly due to higher grants and contributions from WorkCover because of the inclusion of Office Industrial Relations from 1 January 2018.

Departmental services revenue increased by $8 million. This was largely due to additional funding for state school enrolment growth, enterprise bargaining, and increased Australian Government funding under the National Education Reforms  Students First program that was offset by transfer out of funding for Training and Skills functions to the Department of Employment, Small Business and Training (DESBT).

The department also received $3.424 billion in administered funding, an increase of $181 million from 2016-17. Administered funding includes Commonwealth funding transfers to non-government schools, as well as state grants to statutory authorities, peak bodies for non-state schools, and other entities, enabling them to deliver agreed services to Queenslanders.

Figure 1: Income, 2017-18

Source: Department of Education

Infographic Income 2017-18

  • Appropriation revenure = 93.4%
  • User charges = 5.0%
  • Grant's and other contributions = 1.3%
  • Interest = 0.1%
  • Other revenues = 0.4%
  • Total = 100%

Our expenses - how the funds are spent

The department’s total expenses for 2017-18 were $9.355 billion, an increase of $29 million from last year. Employee expenses remain the agency’s major expense component at 70.6 per cent of total expenses. This is in line with the agency’s commitment to improved student outcomes by supporting teachers to focus on student needs through providing more teachers in schools.

Figure 2: Expenses, 2017-18

Source: Department of Education

Infographic Expenses 2017-18

  • Emplyee expenses = 71%
  • Supplies and services = 16.0%
  • Grant's and subsides = 7%
  • Depreciation and amortisation = 5%
  • Finance/borrowing costs = 0.5%
  • Other expenses = 1%
  • Total = 100%

Figure 3: Average cost per student in state schools, 2017-18

Source: Department of Education

Our assets – what we own

The department held assets totalling $19.6 billion at 30 June 2018, a decrease of $738 million on from 2016-2017.

The majority of our assets are in land and buildings. Property, plant and equipment decreased by $616 million mainly due to the transfer of training land and buildings to Department of Employment, Small Business and Training (DESBT), which was offset by increased asset revaluations, and capital works including for the Building Future Schools program.

There was also a decrease in the department’s cash position mainly due to transfers to DESBT, and timing of payments for capital works.

Figure 4: Value of property, plant and equipment


Source: Department of Education

Graph - value of property, plant and equipment

  • 2013 - 2014 the value is between 17-18 million dollars
  • 2014 - 2015 the value is between 16-17 million dollars
  • 2015 - 2016 the value is between 18-19 million dollars
  • 2016 - 2017 the value is between 19-20 million dollars
  • 2017 - 2018 the value is between 18-19 million dollars

Our liabilities - what we owe

The department held liabilities totalling $902 million at 30 June 2018, a decrease of $305 million from 2016-17. This decrease is mainly due to transfer of lease liabilities associated with the Southbank Education and Training Precinct to DESBT, along with provision for training subsidies.

Leased assets and corresponding finance lease liabilities for the Aspire South East Queensland Schools, and the Queensland Schools — Plenary programs are held by the department and form the majority of our financial liabilities.

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Last updated
01 November 2018