Financial performance


​​​​​The department is building Queensland’s future by empowering confident and creative lifelong learners through a student-centred approach to learning and wellbeing.

In 2021–22, the department achieved an operating surpl​us of $159.196 million against a total departmental controlled budget of $11.010 billion. Of this surplus, approximately 77%​ ($122.841 million) relates to non-cash accounting entries for school activities including contributions for land gifted to the department under 'Priority Development Agreements' and the recognition of school minor works and donated assets.​

Key investments during 2021–22 included:

  • continued delivery of infrastructure and capital programs including investments under the Building Future Schools Program which is intended to address enrolment growth
  • provision of world-class​ learning environments for students across Queensland
  • investment in growth, renewal, maintenance and enhancements, including:
    • works under the Cooler Cleaner Schools Program to install new air conditioners in Queensland state school classrooms, libraries and staff rooms
    • installation of solar and energy efficiency measures under the Advancing Clean Energy Schools Program in state schools to reduce energy costs by up to $10 million per annum and assist in offsetting the energy needs of new air conditioning installations across the State.

The department’s material financial statement balances reflect our large school land and buildings portfolio across 1,258 schools, and the payment of salaries for our school, regional and central office full-time equivalent (FTE) employees who number in excess of 75,000. Supplies and services expenses were dominated by curriculum resources, school utility costs, and the maintenance of our large asset base.

The continuing COVID-19 health pandemic has not materially impacted the department’s financial results. However, the department has continued to experience lower levels of international fee revenue stemming from a reduced international education program. There have also been limited reductions in expenditure in certain areas such as travel costs, these cost reductions were partially offset by additional costs in COVID-19 supplies and associated freight costs.

In accordance with section 77(2)(b) of the Financial Accountability Act 2009, I have provided the Director-General with a stat​​​​ement that the financial internal controls of the department are operating efficiently, effectively and economically in line with section 54 of the Financial and Performance Management Standard 2019. As the Acting Chief Finance ​Officer, I have therefore fulfilled the minimum responsibilities as required by section 77(1)(b) of the Financial Accountability Act 2009 (Qld).

Alison Mohr

A/Assistant Director-General, Finance​, Procurement and Facilities Division and Chief Finance Officer

Financial snapshot

Financial snapshot











Controlled revenue: Departmental services revenue8,788,3898,743,2779,416,3799,482,432​10,233​,346
Controlled revenue: Other revenues623,685693,918642,091681,024​749,394
Controlled expenses9,355,3159,390,37210,057,15610,006,139​10,823,544
Operating surplus56,75946,8231,314157,317159,196
Administered grants (state)875,602878,917917,7461,037,219​1,195,695
Capital o​utlays609,490932,9541,158,9501,162,642​1,326,104
Total assets19,600,36121,141,88222,496,46724,358,030​27,746,398
Total liabilities901,8371,059,762998,1351,161,6441,447,456
Net assets/liabilities18,698,52420,082,12021,498,33223,196,386​26,298,942
2017–18 2018–19 2019–20 2020–212021–22
Employee expenses ($000)6,600,8507,031,4817,603,6667,691,693​8,087,572
Number of FTE employees at 30 June72,34173,74173,97175,297​75,267

Source: Department of Education Financial Statements

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

The department received $10.983 billion for our controlled operations, an increase of $819 million from last year.

Departmental controlled services revenue (appropriation) increased by $751 million. This was largely due to additional funding for state school enrolment growth, enterprise bargaining outcomes, the full year impact relating to the transfer of the Racing function as part of machinery of government changes effective December 2020 and increased Commonwealth Government funding under the National School Reform Agreement and associated Bilateral Agreement.

The department also received $4.830 billion in administered funding which is an increase of $616 million from 2020–21. 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, 2021–22

Infographic Income 2021-22

  • Appropriation revenure = 93.18%
  • User charges and fees = 3.68%
  • Grant's and other contributions = 2.29%
  • Other revenues = 0.81%
  • Interest = 0.04%

Source: Department of Education Financial Statements

Our expenses—how the funds are spent

The department’s total controlled expenses for 2021–22 were $10.824 billion, an increase of $817 million from last year. Salaries and wages remain the agency’s major expense component at 75% of total expenses. Salaries and wages expenses have increased by $396 million from 2020–21. This increase is in line with the agency's commitment to improve student outcomes by providing more teachers, teacher aides and wellbeing professionals in schools to focus on students' needs. It also supports delivery and management of the department's infrastructure program, and enterprise bargaining outcomes.


Figure 2: Expenses, 2021–22

Infographic Expenses 2021-22

  • Employee expenses = 74.72%
  • Supplies and services = 14.57%
  • Depreciation and amortisation = 6.56%
  • Grant's and subsides = 3.15%
  • Other expenses = 0.82%
  • Finance/borrowing costs = 0.18%

Source: Department of Education Financial Statements


Figure 3: Average cost per student in state schools, 2021–22

Students with disability:

  • 2017-18: $29,073
  • 2018-19: $29,244
  • 2019-20: $31,824
  • 2020-21: $31,948
  • 2021-22: $31,999


  • 2017-18: $14,463
  • 2018-19: $14,722
  • 2019-20: $15,303
  • 2020-21: $15,451
  • 2021-22: $16,854

Prep and primary:

  • 2017-18: $13,385
  • 2018-19: $13,805
  • 2019-20: $14,388
  • 2020-21: $14,570
  • 2021-22: $16,159

Source: Department of Education Service Delivery Statements (SDS)

Our assets—what we own

The department held assets totaling $27.746 billion at 30 June 2022, an increase of $3.388 billion from 2020–21.

The majority of our assets are in land and buildings which are reported under the heading ‘Property, plant and equipment’. These assets increased by $3.068 billion, mainly due to the accelerated capital works including the Building Future Schools Program and the impact of asset revaluations.

There was an increase in the department’s cash position which is mainly due to a deferred appropriation payment to Queensland Treasury and the timing of payments to creditors.


Figure 4: Value of property, plant and equipment

  • 2017-2018 the value is 18,564 million dollars
  • 2018-2019 the value is 19,919 million dollars
  • 2019-2020 the value is 21,340 million dollars
  • 2020-2021 the value is 22,848 million dollars
  • 2021-2022 the value is 25,916 million dollars

Source: Department of Education Financial Statements

Our liabilities—what we owe

The department held liabilities totalling $1.447 billion at 30 June 2022, an increase of $286 million from 2020–21. The majority of the department’s long-term financial liabilities relate to financing transactions emanating from Public Private Partnerships arrangements.

Last updated 01 November 2022