Report reveals private school received $5.6m in JobKeeper

Rockhampton Grammar School received $5.6 million in JobKeeper in 2020 and more than $17.6 million in school fees, an annual report has revealed.

The report, which is for the year ending December 31, 2020, also revealed headmaster Dr Phillips Moulds received a salary of $498,626, while the deputy headmaster received a wage of $222,317.

The annual report and financial statements were submitted from the school board of trustees to Minister for Education Grace Grace and were recently tabled at Queensland Parliament.

RGS, which was founded in 1881, is one of eight schools in Queensland governed by the Grammar Schools Act 2016.

RGS is the largest independent boarding school in Queensland and the second largest co-educational boarding school in Australia.

In February 2020, the school had 1,373 students, 314 of which were boarders.

Primary school enrolment from prep to year six was 449 students and secondary enrolment from year seven to year 12 was 924 students with eight full-time international students.

The report states 2020 was a “remarkable year” for RGS. Coming off the back of “savage bushfires” at the end of 2019, the school was forced into social distancing restrictions in March and by April the school was a “student free environment”.

The school opened back to face-to-face learning part-way through Term 2.

“(The year) 2020 has resulted in being one of the most tumultuous times in our 139 year history,” Board of Trustees chairman Brad Beasley wrote in the report.

The private school received $5,628,000 from the Australian Government’s JobKeeper Scheme and received a cash flow boost of $100,000.

Jobkeeper top-up payments, payable in addition to employees’ normal wages, amounted to more than $605,000.

The report states JobKeeper allowed the school to maintain the level of education and care services to students and increase employment within the school as it fulfilled regulatory requirements related to the pandemic.

“The Board was grateful for the JobKeeper program, which supported the School to continue to deliver the high-quality education that The Rockhampton Grammar School is renowned for,” Mr Beasley wrote.

“Our unwavering priority was to ensure that we kept our people employed through these stressful and uncertain times while maintaining high levels of education to our students.

“Employing more than 407 full time and part time staff (including casual employees), the impact of any job losses would have had a significant effect throughout our entire community, further affecting students and families at a time of already heightened anxiety.”

The school reported income losses from the early learning centre, international education, boarding, and ancillary activities, estimated to be $1.5 million.

Overall expenditure increased by an estimated $785,000, as the school complied with various COVID-related regulations and initiatives.

The school employed 279.3 staff on a full-time equivalent basis through 2020.

An interesting detail listed in the school results was that the school held its first summer school at the beginning of 2020 with 24 students attending sessions covering biology, general mathematics, chemistry and English.

Phillip Moulds of Rockhampton Grammar School
Phillip Moulds of Rockhampton Grammar School

There was also a report from the Capital Resources subcommittee that focused on the following major projects in 2020:

  • Rugby Park Development Plan.
  • Master Planning and documentation.
  • Girls Boarding Accommodation Planning.
  • Compliance with Combustible Cladding Regulations.
  • Completion of the installation of Solar Panels at the Early Learning Centre site.
  • Planning for possible extension of the Early Learning Centre.
  • Planning for the construction of a new learning facility.

The school has considered a number of designs for a new girls’ boarding facility however this was put on hold due to COVID-19 and will be explored again in 2021.

There are also plans for a new library facility with further plans to be developed this year.

KEY DETAILS FROM 2020 FINANCIAL STATEMENTS:

OTHER INCOME:

  • Early Learning Centre: $4,252,537
  • Dance and Musical Theatre Academy: $180,680
  • Red and Black Shop income: $521,474
  • Canteen income: $171,588
  • Donations: $261,960

EMPLOYEE EXPENSES:

  • 279.3 full time employees and part time employees measured on a full-time equivalent basis.
  • Board members receive no remuneration.
  • Salaries and wages: $26,090,017
  • Total employee expenses including superannuation, employee entitlements, tax and insurance: $30,094,141
  • Headmaster salary: $498,626
  • Deputy headmaster: $222,317

2020 FINANCIAL RESULTS:

  • Fee income: $17,636,833
  • Grants income: $17,184,244
  • Other income: $12,756,454
  • Employee expenses: $30,094,141
  • Supplies and services: 8,484,362
  • Depreciation: $2,647,843
  • Finance costs: $757,468

TOTAL EXPENSES: $1,984,814

Read our story on last years report here.



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