POLITICAL PARTIES: by Bill MuehlenbergNews Weekly
Greens declare war on non-govt schools
, August 7, 2010
I have written previously about Green policies and the dangers they pose. This becomes even more pronounced now that they have struck a deal with Labor. Thus more than ever, a vote for one party is a vote for the other. Those concerned about the culture war against Judaeo-Christian values need to think carefully about where their votes will go on August 21.
The Greens' pro-abortion and pro-homosexuality policies, their weak stance on illicit drugs, their support for ceding national sovereignty to foreign bodies, and so on - all these have been widely reported.
Consider also their stance on education. In their education policies section the Australian Greens declare their intention to:
. end the current arrangement for recurrent funding to non-government schools by no later than the end of 2010.62
. implement a new model for recurrent funding to non-government schools based on the following:
• proper consideration of the resource levels of non-government schools and their financial capacity, including fees and other parent contributions;
• an appropriate measure for indexation of the funding of non-government schools that de-couples it from spending on public schools; and
• non-government schools to be fully accountable to the parliament and therefore transparent to the public on their use of government funds and their financial situation, including all income and assets.63
. ensure that non-government schools in receipt of government funding:-
• do not discriminate in hiring of staff or selection of students;
• have an admissions and expulsions policy similar to public schools including an obligation to enrol; and
• demonstrate social and community engagement and benefit by offering community access to facilities and/or a fee waiver for a percentage of students from disadvantaged backgrounds and/or with special needs.64
. invest the money saved from ending public subsidies to the very wealthiest private schools into a national equity funding programme for public schools.65
. support the maintenance of the total level of Commonwealth funding for private schools at 2003-04 levels (excluding that re-allocated under previous clauses), indexed for inflation.66
. end government funding for schools that operate for private profit."
This is really a declaration of war on private education, including independent schools and Christian schools. Yet the Greens are quite proud of all this. The Greens candidate for the NSW seat of Riverina, David Fletcher, has said: "The Greens are the only party that is pushing for an end to the unjust taxpayer funding of elite wealthy private schools."
But it is not just "elite wealthy" schools that will be targeted here. All
non-government schools will be under the pump if the Greens get their way. Certainly the concept of parental choice will be in jeopardy.
As one concerned commentator has written: "Naturally the Greens party are silent on the subject of how they'd pay for the massive cost burden caused by private school students being forced into government schools as a result of their independent school crackdown.
"Defenders of choice in education say that the relatively small amount of funding per student that private schools get enables multi-billion dollar savings to the public education system.
"There are nearly one million Australian students in over 1,000 independent schools which employ nearly 60,000 staff (full-time equivalent). Weakening the independent school system such that even a small percentage of independent school students end up in government schools would cost many billions of dollars, experts warn.
"They are also silent about the impact of their hiring policies [and how this] could impact religious schools where it might not be appropriate to hire a fundamentalist Christian at an atheist school or vice versa. If enforced, it would almost certainly cause mayhem at Christian, Jewish and Islamic schools across Australia, with Greens party policies dictating who should be hired." (VexNews
, July 19).
This is just another worrying policy which the radical secular left Greens Party will foist upon the Australian people. And Labor is not far away on many of these policies.
Once in power, the Labor/Green machine will quickly implement one radical policy after another. And many of these will have a direct bearing on religious freedoms. Make no mistake about it - the rights of believers will be slowly but surely whittled away under such a government.
It is imperative that voters have a clear understanding of where a party like the Greens stands on various issues, and not just the tree-hugging concerns that we tend to associate with green parties. They have a much bigger agenda which is militantly radical.
I have documented all this elsewhere on my website. In one recent article, for example, I have simply listed their policies and goals as stated on their own website. (Bill Muehlenberg, "Thinking about the Greens", CultureWatch
, February 15).
In this election, perhaps more than at any other time, who wins the August Federal election will make a huge difference to the nation's future. Voters should not go into this election unaware of what is being proposed, and what major social engineering may take place if the parties of the left gain power.
To be forewarned is to be forearmed.Bill Muehlenberg is a commentator on contemporary issues, and lectures on ethics and philosophy. His website CultureWatch is at: www.billmuehlenberg.comReferences
Bill Muehlenberg, "Thinking about the Greens", CultureWatch
, February 15, 2010).
The Greens Party's education policy.
"Greens declare war on private schools", VexNews
, (Melbourne), July 19, 2010.