25 MAY 2016
The following letter-to-the-editor was sent to The Age in response to an ill-informed and unfair comment piece published in the newspaper
on Thursday 19 May.
Unfortunately the letter was severely edited by The Age
before publication on Saturday 21 May.
anti-parent-choice brigade and blinkered bean-counters work on sinister
conspiracy theories (The Age Comment,
19/5), the public needs to know that Catholic schools can’t be accused of over-funding,
even when comparing cherry-picked data to try and prove it.
terms, recurrent government funding sources for Victorian schools are Catholic
schools: 78% federal, 22% state; government
schools: 20% federal, 80% state.
years Victorian governments have used creative accounting to dramatically
underfund their part of the bargain, while politicians in Canberra have understood
and kept pace with the increasing cost of putting a student through school. That
means once chronically under-resourced Victorian Catholic schools are now, on
average, six per cent behind their state school counterparts.
costs are taken into account Catholic schools are nine per cent adrift in total
funding terms. These deficits are, of course, covered by parents’ fees, so it is
indisputable that Catholic school choice benefits the taxpayer.
about a part of the government funding equation conveniently forgotten: school
enrolments. This latest attack based its argument on two ‘roughly matched’
Balwyn schools but failed to mention that the Catholic version is 150 students
smaller than its public neighbour. You would think The Age ‘economics editor’ would appreciate the effect of economies
Executive Director, Catholic