The Sawyer Enquiry

A staple of state oppositions’ rhetoric is to accuse the incumbent government of holding too many enquiries and not taking decisions. I wonder why nobody’s been saying that about Brendan Nelson. Last year, we got the enquiry into phonics, graced with the presence of Miranda Devine. Now, as Troppo suspected, Dr Nelson has signalled his intention to hold an enquiry into teacher education. Unsurprisingly, Sawyer’s article is being cited as a motivating factor. There may be many good reasons to examine teacher education, but is a populist kneejerk reaction to a story the Government itself gave legs to going to lead to anything sensible and considered? Who’s going to be on the panel this time – Piers Akerman, Andrew Bolt? Maybe Keith Windschuttle? Do people get paid to be on these things?

ELSEWHERE: Check out the photo David’s found of the dapper Dr Nelson.

EDITORIAL NOTE: As my two previous posts have attracted very long comments threads, I’ll close them off and anyone wishing to continue the discussion can do so here, since long threads get hard to follow. Previous discussion on Sawyer is here, on the substantive issues raised by his now infamous article here, and Ken’s take here.

UPDATE: Ken’s put a longer and more thoughtful piece up which might be a better place to centralise further discussion of all this. I’ve also just read a thoughtful thread over at Barista on this topic.

About Mark Bahnisch

Mark Bahnisch is a sociologist and is the founder of this blog. He has an undergraduate degree in history and politics from UQ, and postgraduate qualifications in sociology, industrial relations and political economy from Griffith and QUT. He has recently been awarded his PhD through the Humanities Program at QUT. Mark's full bio is on this page.
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Ken Parish
Ken Parish
2022 years ago

I’ve also closed off discussion on my own post on this topic. However, I’ve been musing about another post that at least uses this discussion as a jumping off point, so we might again end up with a confused, fragmented discussion.

I’m not entirely sure what we can do to avoid that, nor that it necessarily matters all that much. Maybe we could both link to the other’s still open post (and perhaps the closed ones as well – and note up the links as “other posts on this general topic”).

Mark Bahnisch
2022 years ago

Makes sense, Ken. By all means, if you want to do a longer post, I could also close this one on the assumption that you’d mention the latest developments so people can discuss them and allow comment on any aspect of the whole thing.

cs
cs
2022 years ago

Ah, a House Committee on UnCoalition Activities. Splendid. Who will play the part of Abbie Hoffman, and front up in a clown suit?

James Hamilton
James Hamilton
2022 years ago

Shit Chris, so many possiblities would not know where to start. Rod Quantock?

I think we can all agree that Ruddock would make a splendid Joe McCarthy. Casting J Edgar Hoover will be a lot of fun. I’m thinking Christopher Pearson.

Whatever happens I hope we do a better job than we did last time.

Evil Pundit
2022 years ago

I think Keith Windschuttle would be an excellent choice.

The issue is not just Sawyer’s wonky editorial, but the wholesale importation of left-wing political propaganda into what ought to be education. This is a double blow to Australia’s future; it fails to give students the skills they need, while simultaneously filling their minds with crap.

It’s a long-overdue move, but I’m not optimistic about the outcome. The ideologues are very heavily entrenched in the education system and it will take a lot of woprk to crowbar them out.

Mark Bahnisch
2022 years ago

I see that Ken’s posted a much longer piece on the ramifications of this affair so in the interests of centralising a sprawling discussion, I’ll close this thread and send intending commenters one post above.