If a doctor, lawyer, or dentist had 40 people in his [or her] office at one time, all of whom had different needs, and some of whom didn't want to be there and were causing trouble, and the doctor, lawyer, or dentist, without assistance, had to treat them all with professional excellence for nine months, then he might have some conception of the classroom teacher's job.
Donald D. Quinn
It is because of our union we have much smaller class sizes than 40. It is also because our federation as well as the rest of the union movement, that we have a Rudd government in Canberra. It wasn’t so much the ALP being elected, but more Howard and the Liberal/Nationals being thrown out of office for their WorkChoices policies and inaction over Climate Change.
We now have Education and Industrial Relations minister, Julia Gillard who has decided to shaft us by publishing school tables. Gillard follows the standard CV requirements of being an education minister applied to any state or federal government, whether ALP or Liberal/Nationals;
1) She‘s never taught in a classroom.
2) She generates ignorant public debates on education.
3) She supports funding to elite private schools.
4) She whips up bigotry and hate against teachers.
TAFE colleagues know all too well that there isn’t much difference between the WorkChoices Lite from the state ALP government. Isn’t it ironic that these same politicians campaigned against the Liberal/Nationals WorkChoices in 2007 state election? In that election, the ALP never said a word about privatisation of electricity or school GA’s.
Australia and Britain both face elections this year and the sad choice in the major parties in the UK is very similar to here, was summed up by Mark Steel in Britain’s Independent when he said, ” There are many questions a population asks itself before a General Election, and the one that many people are asking before the one this year is, "Which of these rancid heaps of sewage will be slightly less repulsive than the other?" Maybe that's the way it should be phrased on the ballot paper, to increase turn-out.” Voting is not compulsory in Britain.
Teachers should seriously consider voting for Independents, the Greens or Socialist Alliance as both the major parties are constantly assaulting us and public education. And in saying that, what has been the point of federation lobbying the ALP or Liberal/Nationals?