#PISA

$34,000 in school fees buys an activist indoctrination, not an education

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CM went to a private school in Sydney. In CM’s day, we were taught respect. To give up seats on the bus if adults got on. To open doors for others. To say thank you. You know, simple manners so devoid of the headphone-wearing, iPhone gazing secondary students today, completely oblivious to pregnant women or the elderly with walking sticks forced to stand on the bus or train.

To hear that Newington College and SCEGGS Darlinghurst are allowing kids to go on the school climate strike tomorrow is an utter farce. How is it that a school that charges up to $34,000 in fees, is prepared to allow kids (with parental permission) to strike? Where is the standard of one set of rules that all must adhere to? Where is the discipline?  At what point will such activism be acceptable to other pet grievances of brain-washed kids, undoubtedly at the behest of teachers pushing their own agendas? Why not teach kids that they can’t just get their way if they protest enough?

One can understand the school respecting and observing long-standing religious days for kids of certain faiths but all this action suggests is that there is a cabal of staff who are activists in the classroom espousing their own political agendas. The headmaster has apparently caved to a bunch of Yr 11 students because climate change must be a religion in and of itself. 

Newington’s own motto, ‘in fide scientam’ (in the faith of all knowledge), suggests the school now no longer adheres to its core values. To allow this simply says that teachers are getting away with brainwashing. Where is the balance? Wouldn’t the majority of parents hope the $34,000 to help provide their kids with a jump start instead of an idiots guide to civil disobedience? Why not dispense with the uniform or replace the blazer emblem with one from Extinction Rebellion?

So what of the stats? For national ATAR scores, Newington’s rank has slipped from 78th in 2013 to 99th in 2018. SCEGGS Darlinghurst has gone from 23rd to 25th over the same period.

Over recent years, Australia’s global education standards have been slipping – in science, maths and English. What a surprise when our academic institutions fold to trendy left-wing causes. Perhaps if they focused on “education” as opposed to “indoctrination” that the long-term prospects for these kids would rise appreciably.

Australia’s future looks grim – not so much for the planet but for the prospects of the coming generations who have been completely misled as to what is actually important and relevant out there in the real world.

Time to lock up Grandma?

Sad to see the loony left are looking to equate kisses from a grandparent with sexual consent. It doesn’t take much imagination but in the Democratic People’s Republic of Victoria some educational apparatchiks believe a grandparent kissing their grandchild can violate them. In what world does a grandparent showing affection to their own flesh and blood have incest on their minds? Most likely never.

These people have absolutely no place setting educational standards. Period. Teachers should focus on lifting us out of the long term slide in overall international scholastic rankings in maths, science and English. Now that climate change is being introduced into the class room might as well teach that 2+2=5 in math.

NZ Wellbeing Budget? Kiwis still better off in Australia

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NZ PM Jacinda Ardern’s Wellness Budget is receiving lots of accolades. A true leader! Champagne socialist Sir Richard Branson also praised her saying other countries should take note. The idea that a budget should be solely based on economics is not progressive and more should be directed at “well-being”. That is not to say this budget is not “well-intentioned”. However, the statistics compared to across the ditch do not fare well on relative terms.

Comparing her newest policies versus Australia reveals the kangaroos get better access to social services than the kiwis. How surprising that none of the mainstream media bothered to look at the budget numbers on a like for like basis? Just praise her because she represents their ideal version of a socialist leader.  CM has looked through both budgets and adjusted for currency to make for easier like-for-like comparisons.

When it comes to health spending per capita (currency adjusted), Australia is expected to climb from A$3,324 in 2019 to A$3,568 in 2022. NZ is expected to go up slightly from A$3,516 to A$3,561 respectively.

On social security and welfare, Australia is expected to pay out A$7,322 per capita in 2019, growing to A$7,977. NZ, on the other hand, is forecast to go from A$5,573 per head to A$6,489.

On mental health, Australia forked out around A$9.1bn exclusively on these services reaching 4.2m citizens last year. NZ is planning on spending A$45.1m in 2019 with a total of A$428m by 2023/24 to hit 325,000 people on frontline services for mental health. While the move is a positive one, NZ will allocate A$1.78bn to mental health as a whole over 5 years. On an annualised basis, Australia will still allocate 5x the NZ amount to mental health per capita. So much for wellbeing.

On education, NZ plans to increase per capita spending 7.9% between 2019 and 2022 whereas Australia will lift it 12.5% over the same period. NZ spends around 2x Australia per capita on education although PISA scores between 2006 and 2015 are virtually identical (and both heading south)

On public housing, Ardern can claim a victory. Australia is expected to cut spending per capita from A$240 in 2019 to A$194 in 2022 when NZ will go from A$137 to A$282. Although let’s hope Ardern has more success than her KiwiBuild policy. The Australian’s Judith Sloan rightly pointed out,

“Ardern also has stumbled with other policies, most notably KiwiBuild. The pledge was to build 100,000 additional affordable homes by 2028.

It has since been modified to facili­tation by the government to help build new homes. Moreover, the definition of afford­ability has been altered from between $NZ350,000 ($340,000) and $NZ450,000 to $NZ650,000.

What started off as an ill-considered public housing project has turned out to be an extremely unsuccessful private real estate scam. The government estimated that there would be 1000 homes built last year under KiwiBuild; it turned out to be 47.”

In the process, NZ’s national debt per capita will grow from A$21,550 in 2019 to A$25,206 by 2022. Australia will climb from A$22,764 to A$23,293.

Look at page 119 of the NZ Wellbeing Budget, we can see the government is forecasting the economy to slow and unemployment to rise.

As we wrote several weeks ago, the statistics that Aussies are about to pack their bags and head of to NZ are not supported. CM wrote,

“According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, there are 568,000 New Zealanders in Australia, or more than double the total 3-decades ago. Therefore more than 11% of the Kiwi population lives in Australia. At last census count, 35,000 New Zealanders migrated to Australia in 2018.

According to the New Zealand Statistics Bureau, 38,700 Aussies live in New Zealand. In the January 2018 year, 24,900 migrants arrived from Australia and a similar number departed for Australia.

Stats NZ stated, “Over half of migrants arriving from Australia are actually returning Kiwis who have been living across the Tasman for more than a year…The number of migrants going back and forth to Australia in the past year almost balanced each other out – the net gain was just 40 people in the last 12 months.”

As socialists love to point out, “feelings matter far more than facts“. Just goes to show how easily people will fall for a catchy headline, rather than judge it on its merits. Time the “woke” wake up from this slumber. By all means, celebrate more recognition of higher mental health spending but best put it in perspective. Jacinda Ardern is ordinary.

Brain dead anoint the brainwashed

The University of Mons in Belgium will anoint 16yo Greta Thunberg with an honorary doctorate in October this year. Will this trigger participation doctorates for all kids who sing the climate emergency tune?

It ranks up there with all of the justification that led to Obama’s Nobel Peace Prize 9 months into his presidency. Literally none. It is pure virtue signaling. It reflects on the university’s clear preference for closed debate.

What troubles CM is that the soon to be Dr Thunberg will be abused even more by those pushing the climate narrative. She is the perfect human shield to the divisive machine that lurks begins her. It is hard to criticize a movement when the face is a child.

She faces either nothing happening with the climate and being exposed as brainwashed. Or the policies she espouses will lead to such a miserable existence that life will be even more miserable that it is now.

This is not to criticize Thunberg per se. She is undoubtedly a very brave girl to face world leaders with a scripted message.

However there is something so Soviet about the way she is the face of the climate change movement, which is the effective trendy thing to be much like socialism was in the 1980s.

Thunberg is a great example of how schools are corrupting young minds. Whether climate change, gender fluidity or cross dressing days, these things have nothing to do with balanced education and critical thinking.

What a surprise to see Sweden’s PISA education scores falling in mathematics, science and reading. Scarily below Australia which has been on a long term decline too.

Naturally the media will overlook this and chant “progressivism” as the way of the future despite their own socialist rhetoric clearly point to “extinction”.

Why stop at kids just protesting climate change?

It’s election time. NSW opposition leader Michael Daley said he supports the climate strike by school kids as a democratic right. Given the kids are being brainwashed with only one side of the debate, perhaps the teachers might show them these two front covers from Time and debate why the scientists were wrong and could they be making the very same mistakes again?

Yet why stop at letting kids take a day off school to protest climate change? Why not strike over the rebuild of the Allianz Stadium? Perhaps demonstrate over the West Connex motorway? How about screaming inside Woolworths over milk prices paid to farmers? Why not protest The price of electricity? Anemic wage growth? Housing prices? Negative gearing? Offshore detention? Immigration?

Using kids as political pawns is disgraceful on every level. Parents and teachers who back this type of activism need to be schooled themselves in common sense. So weak must the arguments be to have to let kids do the bidding for them.

Perhaps teachers should look in the mirror and come up with answers to the sustained slump in our global PISA rankings for English, maths and science first before organizing excursions to support ideologies that don’t have any relation to the curriculum.

The reality is when kids from other nations blitz them in the real world in later life, those participation trophies will do little to assuage their anxiety much less make their lives happier in a climate that won’t have turned out anyway like they were force fed.