Wednesday, March 31, 2004


Australia's Left falls foul of teachers' unions: "Latham's policy that good teachers in bad schools be paid more is a good idea. It is recognition from the Labor Party that market forces apply in education as they do in all walks of life.... The great myth of education policy in this country is that non-government schools outperform government schools because government schools must teach any student that wishes to attend, while non-government schools have the privilege of choosing who they enrol. In fact, non-government schools achieve higher outcomes because they employ better teachers, and they are largely free from the dictates of state education departments and teachers unions.... the union of teachers in government schools, the Australian Education Union, is implacably opposed to merit pay and differential salaries because such measures require an assessment of the performance of individual teachers and their school... Latham can't have it both ways. He can't reform government schools and satisfy the teachers union."

Educational control freaks: "Although many teachers and principals officially tout the benefits of parental involvement, they become nervous when parents actually do get involved. They fear parents and seek to stop them from making choices about which schools their children will attend, about the curriculum used in their children's instruction, and about the punishments used in the schools."

Home schooling "A newer breed of home schooler is emerging, motivated not by religious belief or countercultural philosophy. Uppermost for such parents are concerns about violence, peer pressure, and poor academic quality in their schools."


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