The Null Device

In his image

As well as seizing control of industrial relations from the states, the Australian federal government will also use its new powers to unify the school systems. All Australian schools will have an emphasis on "values"; not much is said about what sorts of values, but there are hints in the other changes: all students will take 2 hours of mandatory physical education training a week (all the better to make fit soldiers for our future engagements, and/or foster a naturally conformistic and conservative jock culture), and schools will also need to fly the Australian flag at assemblies (to instill a US-style culture of jingoistic patriotism; perhaps a pledge of allegiance will be next). And so, the Australian school system becomes a weapon in the culture war, striking a hammer-blow to the degenerate un-Australian values of Whitlam/Keating-era latte-leftists and producing a new crop of strong, patriotic, God-fearing future Herald-Sun readers; or so it is hoped.

There are 4 comments on "In his image":

Posted by: gjw http://the-fix.org Tue Jun 28 00:49:50 2005

I doubt many public school teachers will happily play along with this plan.

Posted by: dj http:// Tue Jun 28 01:37:34 2005

Two hours of p.e. per week is less than we did when I was at school. Whether that breeds conformism really depends on what activities you do during that time. I'd be less worried about getting kids up and moving than some of the other things. Though wouldn't these measures just be about making kids more conformist than they already are? A lot of schooling is already about appropriate socialisation rather than education.

Posted by: dj http:// Tue Jun 28 02:22:52 2005

Two hours of p.e. per week is less than we did when I was at school. Whether that breeds conformism really depends on what activities you do during that time. I'd be less worried about getting kids up and moving than some of the other things. Though wouldn't these measures just be about making kids more conformist than they already are? A lot of schooling is already about appropriate socialisation rather than education.

Posted by: acb http://dev.null.org Tue Jun 28 09:52:24 2005

Well, most of the teachers I had were socialists of some stripe; I think it's some kind of self-selection mechanism innate to the teaching profession.

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