AUSTRALIAN COUNCIL FOR THE DEFENCE OF GOVERNMENT SCHOOLS - D.O.G.S.
PRESS RELEASE 58#.
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FEDERAL EDUCATION MINISTER'S PLANS FOR TAFE HECS:
IS THIS PART OF THE PLAN FOR GENERAL AGREEMENT ON TRADES IN SERVICES?
In a previous Press Release we warned readers about Mr Howard's current negotiations for a new GATS Agreement due to be signed early in 2003. We warned supporters of public education that "vocational" education is proposed as part of this international agreement. This means that TAFE provision will join university provision as a service open to multinational providers.
The latest proposal of Dr. Brendan Nelson for "Income Contingent Loans" for TAFE students - a fancy term for HECS style fees being introduced into TAFE which might eventually spread to the nation's 1.3 million TAFE students, needs to be put into perspective.
Mr Denis Fitzgerald, the Federal President of the Australian Education Union in a recent AEU Media Release notes that $300 million has been slashed from TAFE funding in recent years. At the same time at least 4.5 billion dollars are diverted to a wealthy private school sector.
He is correct to note this appalling discrepancy.
But public school supporters concerned at the privatisation of the tertiary as well as the primary and secondary sector should be looking even further afield.
Once large multinational companies are permitted into our educational services sector, there is no going back.
The inheritance of our next generation will be placed in the hands of free marketeers whose mantra is "profit", "profit" and even more "profit" - with demands for corporate welfare at the taxpayers expense , of course.
Dr. Nelson is flying a kite at this stage.
The NSW Minister for Education (TAFE is still largely a State funding responsibility) has rejected the Federal Minister's plans for HECS style fees for TAFE.
Victorian TAFE students should be demanding similar assurances from Mr Bracks, Mr Brumby and Lyn Kosky!
If you have a message for supporters of public education:
Ray Nilsen on
(03) 9326 9277 or Fax: (03) 9326 9180
P.O. BOX 4869
Melbourne Victoria Australia 3001
Or complete our feedback form.
|Last modified:Monday, 25 April 2005|