Australian Greens Education spokesperson Senator Mehreen Faruqi has responded to the Education Minister’s latest attempt to whitewash Australian history and pressure the independent curriculum authority to sanitise what’s taught in our schools.
Senator Faruqi said:
“Alan Tudge’s ever-escalating culture war is offensive, pathetic and ahistorical. It should be challenged by everyone who cares about the integrity of our education system.
“Students should be learning critical thinking, not a sanitised version of history. Tudge clearly sees it as his mission as Education Minister to fight what he considers a ‘woke’ agenda in education. This is an alarming approach to say the least.
“The Education Minister’s obsession with the national curriculum reflects several of his Liberal predecessors. But if Christopher Pyne was famously ‘hands-on’, Alan Tudge is ‘gloves off’.
“Right-wing politicians the world over are currently waging these wars. The confected outrage over ‘critical race theory’ in the United States is a case in point. It can escalate and infringe on the civil liberties of teachers and school communities.
“I worry about the effect this has on the independence of ACARA. It’s their job to dispassionately draft the curriculum in consultation with experts. Tudge’s ideological campaign of parliament speeches, TV interviews and newspaper op-eds is unprecedented and puts pressure on them.
“Of course, the great outrage is that while the Education Minister has been fighting this history war, universities have continued to lose thousands of jobs. Schools are grappling with immense challenges in the pandemic. Education is in crisis and the Minister is missing in action.”