The decline in Australian education standards won’t be turned around by simply throwing more taxpayer money at the problem, Australian Conservatives WA Senate candidate Jonathan Crabtree has stated.
Mr Crabtree noted that, despite the extra billions of dollars poured into education over the last decade, the educational performance of Australian students had either stagnated or gone backwards by all national and international measures.
“The major parties like to talk about how much of our money they’re spending on education but all this additional investment has failed to lift standards, with Australian students slipping further behind their peers in other countries,” Mr Crabtree said.
“This has left Australia facing a situation where, according to one report, nearly a third of 15-year-olds fail to meet international baseline standards for reading, mathematics and science. Left unchecked, this trend does not bode well for our future economic competitiveness and social well-being.”
Mr Crabtree said the Australian Conservatives were committed to higher education standards, with the party calling for a ‘back to basics’ approach.
“There is a need for school curricula to be de-cluttered and a stronger emphasis on the essentials – reading, writing and mathematics – as the foundation of learning,” Mr Crabtree said.
“The failings of the national curriculum were exposed in the 2014 review conducted by Professor Ken Wiltshire and Dr Kevin Donnelly. However, the Coalition patently failed to take action on many of the recommendations contained in the review and the issue seems to have fallen off their radar.”
According to Mr Crabtree, Australian students were leaving school not only without solid skills in maths, science and English but also without basic cultural and historical literacy.
“Students can go through twelve years of schooling and learn almost nothing of substance about Australia’s Western and Judeo-Christian heritage and the foundations of our nation,” Mr Crabtree said.
“Instead, our kids are being indoctrinated by a curriculum crammed full of left-wing political correctness and new-age fads.”
Mr Crabtree said that, if elected to the Senate, he would fight for a root-and-branch renewal of education to ensure future generations received the best education possible.