Much like my wife and I discussing what we would do if we won Lotto, Gillard announces her latest distraction from the mediocrity of her government – The Asian Century.
The white paper, unveiled in Sydney by the Prime Minister yesterday, sets a series of ambitious goals, including elevating the nation’s schools system into the world’s top five, having 10 universities in the world’s top 100 by 2025, and giving every school student the chance for continuous study of an Asian language.
Well yes, no one would argue that these aren’t worthwhile pusuits. The trouble is, the ALP are full of lofty aspirations but very short in the funding department.
Emmerson underlines this saying;
… the states would have to supply the teachers needed to embark on the Asian languages blitz. Those that refused would be denied education funding.
Like Rudd’s 2009 Defence White Paper this plan will be buried in the “when we win Lotto’ filing cabinet along with a lot of ALP plans
It won’t be funded, it can’t be funded and within two weeks ABC24 will be lining up to tell us about the next ‘New Gillard Initiative’ and the rest of us will have moved on.
Productivity is listed as one of the key planks but productivity is doomed while the the Fair Work Act favours the unionists and not the entrepeneur. Every kid learning an Asian language from grades 1 thru 12 is another, but once again the Government says; Here’s a good idea we just thought of but we can’t finance it so the states are going to have to find the money.
Gillard forgets that the Eastern seaboard states are flat out trying to pay off previous ALP government’s huge debts and have no spare cash to fund her ‘If I won Lotto” shopping list.
I was once a linguist myself in the days when we were having a little war with Indonesia and I’ve often bemoaned the fact that Asian languages don’t get the priority I think they deserve. My contacts in education tell me that the kids choose not to take them because of the weighting given languages for Uni entrance makes a language a second rate ambition
Meanwhile Gillard closes down an Asian language initiative
THE federal government will let a $62 million Asian language program expire in December despite saying it wants four priority languages to be taught from primary school to high school.