AUSTRALIAN COUNCIL FOR THE DEFENCE OF GOVERNMENT SCHOOLS - D.O.G.S.
PRESS RELEASE 119#.
25 August 2005
ISLAMIC SCHOOLS- ISLAMIC SUMMIT-
MUSLIM LEADERS SUMMIT
FAILURE TO PROMOTE PUBLIC EDUCATION AS A SOLUTION
Australian political leaders have identified a very real problem of lack of cohesion and integration of various groups within the Australian community.
But they have failed miserably to identify and promote the obvious answer to the problem - the cessation of State Aid to sectarian institutions and the promotion of the public education sector.
WHAT THEY SAY:
John Howard (the Prime Minister) has been promoting "greater social cohesion " . In announcing his meeting with Islamic leaders he indicated that there was to be:
"identification of strategies to promote commitment to shared values and enhancement of social cohesion within the Australian community."
Brendan nelson, (Federal Minister for Education) stressed that it was important that:
"all groups be integrated into the Australian community, whatever their religion."
Mr Cobb ( Federal Minister for Citizenship and Multicultural Affairs) said that there will be an advertising campaign with
" the aim to coax segregated communities out of isolation "
He also stated that
" the only way to break down barriers is by association!"
Unfortunately the Labor Party missed a golden opportunity to promote public education and return to their 1960s principled opposition to State Aid for private segregationist schools.
In recent weeks Kim Beazley ( leader of the Federal Opposition ) and Jenny Macklin ( Shadow Minister for Education ) have been promoting -
" Buddy programs between schools to facilitate friendships between students from different denominations and mixed school social activities."
They proclaimed that
"it would be terrific thing if the kids in Moslem schools and the kids in Christian schools had an opportunity to in a formal way to meet together to learn about each other to learn about the need to respect each other's culture."
The mind boggles. Why cant Beazley and Jenny Macklin just promote public schools which have been doing the above - and successfully at that- since their inception. The best "formal" and "informal" way to promote social cohesion is to have children of different religious and cultural backgrounds in the classroom learning together and in the playground, playing together.
This is already happening in our public system. It is the private sectarian system which is the problem!
Public education is an exercise of community with the public learning to work together for their children and with the children of the public learning to work, to live, and to play together.
As Howard and Nelson rush to privatize our public system, abusing its teachers and bringing it to its knees with funding discrimination -while bolstering up sectarian schools, with billions and billions and more billions of public money- they bleat about "cohesion"
WHAT THEY DON'T SAY:
As far the DOGS are aware, there is no one State Minister of Education who has promoted public education as the solution to the "Muslim" problem. There is no one who has said that State Aid should not be given to promote separate Muslim schools.
To be consistent they would have to bite the real bullet. If they say that Muslims should not be given public money to segregate their children, they would have to confront the most powerful faction in Australian politics - the Roman Catholic Church. And there is no politician with the intestinal fortitude to promote the values of public education with its corollary.
Our Victorian Minister for Education is spending more time fraternizing with the Roman Catholic Education bureaucrats and drawing up legislation to destroy public education as we know it, to promote all the virtues of the public system for which she should be primarily responsible.
WHAT THEY SHOULD SAY:
STATE AID DIVIDES.
Look what has happened since State Aid was introduced in the mid 1960s.
NUMBER AND TYPE OF PRIVATE SCHOOLS FUNDED TO DIVIDE AUSTRALIAN CHILDREN
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|Last modified:Thursday, 25 August 2005|