Today Christopher Pyne appointed two of his chosen men to review our national curriculum, Kevin Donnelly and Ken Wiltshire.
I expect it will be a shambles.
We certainly don’t need to wait until May to know what this review-by-two will come up with.
Kevin Donnelly is well known in education circles. He has attacked just about every component of the national curriculum that has been developed and agreed upon so far.
Here are Donnelly’s thoughts. The words are direct quotes from his website:-
Every subject has to be taught through environmental, indigenous and Asian perspectives where new-age, 21st century generic skills and competencies undermine academic content.
The draft civics and citizenship curriculum air brushes Christianity from the nation’s civic life and institutions and adopts a postmodern, subjective definition of citizenship, one where “Citizenship means different things to people at different times and depending on personal perspectives, their social situation and where they live”.
The history curriculum, in addition to uncritically promoting diversity and difference instead of what binds as a community and a nation, undervalues Western civilisation and the significance of Judeo-Christian values to our institutions and way of life.
…the English national curriculum adopts an exploded definition of literature, one where classic works from the literary canon jostle for attention along side SMS messages, film posters, graffiti and multi-modal texts.
While nodding in the direction of teaching phonics and phonemic awareness, where children are taught the relationship between letters and groups of letters and sounds in a more formal, structured way, the English curriculum also favours whole language where children are taught to look and guess.
(The emphasis in bold is my addition.)
The national curriculum in Foundation to Year 10 in English, Maths, Science, History and Geography has already been agreed by all states and territories and is either being implemented or in the process of being implemented.
Getting this far has taken years of collaboration, extensive consultation and work by hundreds of expert teachers, academics, parents and politicians. It has not been easy.
However it will be very easy to undo it all.
States and territories that do not agree with changes to the national curriculum suggested by Pyne’s review-by-two can simply opt out.
Sadly I believe Christopher Pyne’s ideological obsessions will not end with this review.
Next will be an attempt to change how teachers teach.
One reason why the cultural-left has been so successful in controlling the education system is because the majority of Australia’s professional bodies, subject associations and teacher training academics are hostile to a conservative view of education epitomised by choice and diversity, an academic curriculum, meritocracy and traditional styles of teaching.
Academics across the nation who are involved with teacher education can start preparing now.
Here is Pyne’s announcement Announcement of Curriculum Review