AUSTRALIAN COUNCIL FOR THE DEFENCE OF GOVERNMENT
SCHOOLS - D.O.G.S.
PRESS RELEASE 186#.
17 JANUARY 2007
IS JOHN LENDERS TO BE THE NEW VICTORIAN
PPPS (PUBLIC PRIVATE PARTNERSHIP)
EDUCATION MINISTER ?
On November 29 2006 Victorian Premier Steve Bracks sacked the disastrous Victorian Education Minister Lynne Kosky and appointed John Lenders as the new Victorian Minister for Education.
During the 2006 election campaign the ALP promised the creation of a "new generation of schools". Labor announced that it would commit an extra $1.9 billion in its next term in addition to the $448 million committed in the current financial year in order to deliver $2.3 billion for education capital over a five year period. They claimed that, at the end of their ten year plan, in 2016, every government school would be modernised or rebuilt.
When Mr Bracks announced his rejuvenated cabinet he claimed that education remained the government's number one priority and John Lenders, as Education Minister and Jacinta Allen as Education Services Minister would oversee the largest post-war modernisation building program in Victorian public schools. He also announced the appointment of two new people to the Education portfolio, namely John Lenders as Minister for Education and Fiona Richardson as Parliamentary Secretary for Education.
John Lenders has a background in Finance and Public / Private connections. In the previous government he was over Finance and Major Projects as well as VIC URBAN. He appears to be particularly suited to privatization of the building of public schools. Only time will tell, but it should be noted that the Bracks Government in general and the Treasurer and his advisory mandarins have been promoting public / private partnerships in the last couple of years. ( See Press Releases 181 : www.adogs.info/pr181.htm ; Press Release 57: www.adogs.info/pr57.htm ; Press Release 126: www.adogs.info/pr.126.htm; and Press Release 128: www.adogs.info/pr128.htm)
It is of particular interest to note that VIC URBAN placed the following Advertisement in The Age Education Supplement on 9 October 2006, p 2. This Advertisement read in part:
Thus John Lenders, in his previous portfolio was blatantly promoting the expansion of private schools in a VIC URBAN development. What is more, in the ALP election policy promised to set aside land in growth corridors for new, not for profit non-government schools.
It appears that Steve Bracks has appointed John Lenders, not because he knows anything about public education. There is no clear evidence to indicate that he is strong supporter or promoter of public education. He could well finish off the job commenced by Lynne Kosky - namely the privatisation of public education in Victoria.
It should not be forgotten that Steve Bracks has also appointed Fiona Richardson as the Parliamentary Secretary for Education. She appears to have no connection with public education. She was educated at St. Thomas primary school and the Methodist Ladies College. She has no track record in public education. It is of interest to note that, before entering Parliament, she was formerly employed by John Lenders, the Minister for finance. It is also of interest to note that in 2006 she was the Secretary of the Right Wing Faction in the ALP and she is the wife of Stephen Newnham, the current Labor Party State Secretary.
So Fiona Richardson's husband fills the post once held by her boss, John Lenders from 1994-1999. What an incestuous, close, and closed network our Victorian ALP government has become.
What credentials! What a scandal! DOGS calls on supporters of public education to re-double their defence of our children's inheritance before it is sold by right wing Labor machine men and women for a mess of pottage to the PPPS!
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|Last modified:Wednesday, 17 January 2007|