Advertisements confuse readers

I wish to draw your attention to two full-page advertisements in issue 181 of Coast Community News, found on pages 7 and 11.

The first claims a funding cut of $570,030 to Henry Kendal High School, while the second claims a record increased funding of $2,516,201. No clear timeline is given in either advertisement, though the second implies a time of 9 years from the present. A rather grandiose claim, considering the present Federal Government may be in opposition in less than 9 years. All comparisons are relative, either to each other or to some initial reference point.

Email contact with Labor, Liberal and the NSW Teacher’s Federation indicate the probability the stated values in the advertisements are relative to different reference points. Labor’s claim appears to be based on the original Gonski plan and the funding that Henry Kendal High would have received by the end of the plan (2018/2019), compared to the funding presently offered by the Liberals, i.e. an effective reduction by the Liberals of $570,030. Prior to the previous election, Tony Abbot essentially promised “no cuts to education”, only to break that promise shortly after winning the election in 2015. The Turnbull Government reduced school funding even further in 2017.

The Liberal claim for “record levels of school funding” appears to be totally devoid of any comparison with Labor’s original offer under Gonski. My real concern is that neither advertisement provides sufficient information for realistic evaluation by Central Coast voters. Come on Labor and Liberals, we the voters deserve to be better informed by better quality advertisements than those to which I refer.

Email, Col Hodgson Mount Elliot