Catholics Coalition says Govt schools need support
The Sydney-based Catholics in Coalition for Justice and Peace (CCJP) is arguing that the Federal Government should not be allowed to run down the public school system as part of the "privatisation process that has dogged this nation since the 1980s".
The group believes that significantly increased Government support for non-Government schools is motivated by the "economic rationalist view that a private dollar is worth more than a public dollar and that the private sector can always produce better outcomes than government or bureaucracies".
CCJP Coordinator Sr Margaret Hinchey said: "Many public schools have healthy discipline, excellent academic standards and solid values education. Some do not. Many private schools have healthy discipline, excellent academic standards and solid values education. Some do not. It all depends on many, often complex, factors."
Sr Hinchey points out that Australia developed a "unique and highly successful public education system whereby every child from Bondi to Broome had access to good education regardless of race, colour, creed or financial status". She said the system has been "largely responsible for giving this nation its present high levels of educated citizens".
"It would be a tragedy if this egalitarian system were lost or so downgraded as to be second rate because of the false notion that private is always better than public," she said. "We welcome the ALP's apparent readiness to accept government responsibility to ensure that this unique system of education continues to be strong and effective for all Australian children who choose to use it."
The current debate regarding private versus public education needs to be seen in a wider context (Catholics in Coalition for Justice and Peace 22/9/04)
Catholics in Coalition for Justice and Peace
When Christian schools bear false witness (The Age 22/9/04)
Lessons in division don't add up (The Australian 22/9/04)
23 Sep 2004