AUSTRALIAN COUNCIL FOR THE DEFENCE OF GOVERNMENT
SCHOOLS - D.O.G.S.
PRESS RELEASE 180#.
15 NOVEMBER 2006
VICTORIAN STATE ELECTION 2006
ALP PROMISES 1.9 BILLION FOR PUBLIC EDUCATION BUILDING INFRASTRUCTURE
BRACKS' LEGISLATIVE PROVISIONS AND APPOINTMENTS UNDERMINE
THE FOUNDATIONS OF PUBLIC EDUCATION
Bracks has attempted to shore up the State School vote with promises of infrastructure funding. As one journalist put it ( The Age, Tuesday, November 14, 2005) his promises involve
"part of the biggest school upgrade since World War 11."
In his Policy speech, Bracks also claimed that
"Education has been Labor's Number One priority since Day One and Education is still our Number One priority".
Whilst painting the Liberals as producing a B Grade Public Education system, he attempted to portray an A Grade Public Education system under his Labour Government.
However, Bracks still had to appease what has been described as "needy" non-government schools by promising $30 million over four years in grants for upgrading of their facilities. Even worse, for the future of public education he has promised to set aside land in growth corridors for new "not-for-profit" non-government schools.*
What Bracks did not tell voters is that during his time in power he has fulfilled the Labor Party's long term function in Australian politics. He has laid the foundation for either his Right Wing Labor Government or Victorian Conservative parties to do their worst to our public system. His government has appointed persons committed to privatization of the public system to key bureaucratic positions with the top 50 persons unable to give a public commitment to public education. ( See press Release 113 at www.adogs.info/pr113.htm ) He has also passed the most destructive legislation for public education since 1872. He has laid the foundation for the wholesale selling off and privatization of our public system. ( See Information on the Education and Training Reform Act, particularly the DOGS Advertisements 26 April 2005 and 27 March 2006 and other information on this legislation at http://www.fightingforpubliceducation.info/)
Since coming to office through re-definition, he has legislated out of existence the 1872 historic, secular aspect of Victorian public education. This is underlined by the Victorian Labor Party's failure to oppose Howard's chaplaincy scheme. ( See Press Releases 177 and 153. www.adogs.info/pr177.htm and www.adogs.info/pr153.htm. )
Following the UK Blair privatisation model, the Brack government has legislated to set up a Statutory Authority with power to de-register or "fail" State schools and privatize them. ( See Press Release 131 at www.adogs.info/pr131.htm) His Minister has introduced "dual streaming" in State schools, enabling aggressive private, religious groups to disrupt and "capture" our State schools.
Finally, although Bracks is promising money for upgrades for our public schools he has failed to clearly enunciate the source of the promised 1.9 billion. The Brumby/Bracks Treasury policy favours public/private partnerships. If we are to retain even the vestiges of our public education system, Mr Bracks should declare his abandonment of the public / private partnership model in educational provision.
Bracks has promised to build up the muscle and bone structure of our public education system, but he is in the act of destroying its brain and central nervous system. State school supporters should demand a return to a genuinely free, secular and universal system of public education with the Minister and her employees committed in word and deed to its promotion and well being.
Given the track record of the Lib/Labs, State school supporters should refuse to give either Labor or Liberals their first preference. DOGS are giving their first preference to Green or Independent / Socialist candidates committed to public education.
* Does this mean that private church schools don't have to even buy their land; pay rates or land tax on their land; sell their land for profit if they choose with no strings attached; have capital, interest, and running costs overwhelmingly paid for by the Federal and State governments; enjoy indirect taxation benefits because they are "charities", yet be open to only the select religious and economic minority?
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|Last modified:Wednesday, 15 November 2006|