16 May 2017

Page 10

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Western Port News 16 May 2017

Stephen Taylor steve@mpnews.com.au SECONDARY schools in Frankston and on the Mornington Peninsula are set to be shortchanged by millions of dollars in federal funding over the next two years, according to figures released by the Victorian Department of Education. The schools are among 70 statewide slated to receive up to $1.1 million less in the short term than would have been the case under Better Schools funding, also known as the Gonski agreement since businessman David Gonski reviewed schools funding for both the previous Labor and current Coalition federal governments. A “Gonski 2.0” funding agreement officially announced in last Tuesday’s federal budget by Treasurer Scott Morrison will see public schools receive more money over ten years but effectively less upfront than was originally proposed in the next two years. A Victorian Education Department analysis instigated by Labor state government ministers shows 1535 state schools will receive less in 2018 and 2019 than under the old funding plan, which still had a year to run. Principals at a handful of schools called for comment last week did not respond about the state department’s figures that show over the next two years:  Mornington Secondary College will be $1.2 million worse off;  Rosebud Secondary College $800,000$900,000;  Frankston High School $1.2 million;  Western Port Secondary College $500,000; 

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Dromana Secondary College $1-$1.1 million;  Mount Eliza Secondary College $400,000

$500,000 Victorian Education Minister James Merlino said it was “laughable that Malcolm Turnbull is still trying to pass [the budget] off as a positive story for Victorian schools”. “The fact is it leaves a $630 million shortfall for Victorian schools against the original agreement,” he said. This is more than just a number. It has a direct impact and hurts the kids that need it the most and can least afford it. “We funded our share of the agreement for 2018 in our recent state budget because it was the right thing to do. It is really that simple.” But, despite the possible short-term pain, federal Dunkley Liberal MP Chris Crewther said schools were set to benefit with a total increase in federal funding of $331 million over the next 10 years. “Every school in Dunkley – all 51 of them – will have their funding secured and increased under our fairer, needs-based Gonski funding model,” Mr Crewther said. “Importantly, our increased funding will be tied to reforms that evidence shows make a real difference to supporting our teachers and schools to improve student outcomes. “This is a fair system that is good for students, good for parents and good for teachers.” Two high-profile politicians visited Dunkley in the wake of the federal budget. Liberal Treasurer Scott Morrison visited Mt Eliza on Friday (12 May) to spruik his second budget as treasurer and Labor opposition leader Bill Shorten hosted a community forum in Frankston on Saturday (13 May) to criticise the federal budget.

Agent backs new laws on quoting Stephen Taylor steve@mpnews.com.au A BALNARRING real estate agent is happy about changes to the Underquoting Act which came into effect last week. “We’ve been pushing for the changes since 2008,” Coast Real Estate agent David Wright said. “We’ve been in direct communication with the Minister for Consumer Affairs about them. “We think it’s about time those agents who are manipulating the price by using price plus, negotiable over, offers over, or buyers starting at, get hauled in. “We’ve been using a trusted and compliant Price Ranger strategy since we started selling around the Western Port area 10 years ago.” The new laws apply to sales authorities signed on or after 1 May. Those signed before then do not require the agent to prepare a statement of information for the property, but any prices advertised on or after that date must adhere to the new advertising requirements. The new rules stipulate that an estimated selling price must be reasonable, and take into account the sales of three comparable properties. An agent’s estimated selling price must be included in the sales authority, and in the approved form. It may be a single price – for example, $500,000, or a range of up to 10 per cent – for example, $500,000 to $550,000. If an estimated selling price changes because it ceases to be reasonable, the agent must inform the seller in writing, update the sales authority, and update the advertising. “The most important thing is transparency,” Mr Wright said. “We deal with the largest purchase that most people will make and we need to disclose as much information as we can so that potential

buyers can make an informed decision,” he said. “Some agents might say, let’s blow them away [with a low-price estimate] but they might not realise that they may be putting their clients in a position where they can be fined up to $200,000 [for breaching the underquoting laws].” A shortage of houses for sale now was exacerbating the problem because most properties would be selling at the top of their range,” Mr Wright said.

Bee the cure THE founder of Save the Bees Australia – Bee The Cure Simon Mulvany will discuss the importance of bees to the world, 11am-midday Wednesday 24 May at Mornington Library. Mr Mulvany is an ex-ranger, gardener and beekeeper whose mission is to educate the community about the predicament of indigenous and introduced bees. “It is crucial we help protect the native species and keep honey bees respectfully and responsibly,” he said. “Whether it is in industry or biodiversity, the world simply cannot live without bees.” Bookings at ourlibrary.mornpen.vic.gov.au or call 5950 1820.

Comedy night COMEDIAN Jimeoin will star in a comedy night to raise funds for the Mt Martha Junior Football Club, 6-11.30pm, Saturday 20 May. The night, at Mornington Racing Club, will include comedian Katie Breheny, the Two Phase Band and a two-course meal of main and dessert. Dress is smart casual. Tickets are $89 plus $2.50 booking fee. Book at trybooking.com.au/OIEQ


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