Thursday, July 9, 2009

Teacher unions hold future to ransom

Michael Costa in this morning's The Australian:
EDUCATION Minister Julia Gillard has within her portfolio responsibilities the challenge of managing arguably the most ideological and militant section of Australia's union movement, the teachers unions. The negative impact of these unions on the national economy and the financial and psychological wellbeing of Australian citizens far outweighs the damage caused by the periodic outbreaks of criminality witnessed in the building and construction sector.
The disproportionate and hysterical campaign being run by teachers unions against the federal government's modest attempts to reform Australian education shows how unreasonable and reactionary teachers unions have become.
Former leader of the opposition and one time minister for education Brendan Nelson chimes in:
The exchange with the principal is instructive.
"Doctor Nelson, you will not be welcomed here by many of our staff. As you can see, this is a very poor community. If they had any idea how badly the school is performing, we'd be shut down within a year."
As an afterthought she added, "our job is to offer hope".
Stunned, I replied, "If the school is performing so poorly and were it to be known, wouldn't people be demanding of government why and that it be fixed? Don't children, irrespective of their circumstances, have the right to go from primary to high school armed not only with hope but the ability to read, write and count?"
Those opposed to publishing "simplistic" league tables and insisting on comparisons with "like" communities, carry a deep, false belief that kids from poorer backgrounds will never do as well as those from more affluent electorates like mine. Nonsense.

Posted via email from Garth's posterous

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