PM praises Catholic schools
After receiving an honorary doctorate at Perth's Notre Dame University, Prime Minister John Howard has praised Catholic education and made an assurance that current Government funding would be maintained.
The Catholic Leader reports that in his acceptance speech on 27 July, Mr Howard "saluted" Notre Dame's 10 years of achievement and its distinguished contribution to "the rich tradition of Catholic education in Australia".
Mr Howard said that one of Australia's greatest achievements is the appropriate balance it has achieved between private and public provision of basic human services.
"This is nowhere better illustrated than in the area of education," he said. "The opportunity for Australian parents to choose either a public or private education for their children ... is probably at an optimum among industrialised nations."
Outside the ceremony, up to 60 representatives of the Union of Students and others used sirens and a sound system to criticise the awarding of a doctorate to Mr Howard.
Notre Dame Australia
Receiving of honourary doctorate (PM's website)