October 28, 2012
Total Education Responds to Asian Century White Paper
The Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, has just released a White Paper outlining policy directions for Australia in the next century. As a former Minister of Education who is passionate about raising the standard of education in this country, it is not surprising that she places great emphasis on education as a key for the community’s prosperity and capacity for engagement with Asia, saying “More than ever before, it’s impossible to maintain a strong economy without a world-class education system.” A core feature of the education agenda is the pursuit of excellence.
Parents want the best for their children. Most aspire to economic prosperity — for their children to get on in the world. The issue is how to achieve the excellence that will bring success and prosperity to the individual and the community without sacrificing the child’s welfare in the process. The education system currently implements an approach based on competition.
As the Prime Minister points out, under the current educational models, many fall by the wayside, leaving school early with a sense of failure and inability to make it. “Unlike in ages past, we will not settle for a student sitting at the back of the class not learning and then drifting away from school early. We can no longer tell ourselves this is all OK because a manual job will materialise for the child who cannot read, write or count” she said.
The introduction of Total Education in Australian schools would be a step towards addressing a perceived need for more values-based and holistic approach to educating the nation’s children. The School of Total Education already has a track record of more than thirty years experience in producing graduates who achieve in the top levels academically, whilst being well-balanced emotionally.
The question for educators today is how to develop students who are capable of meeting the challenges that the modern world places before them, in terms of technological progress, social engagement and a capacity for responding to innovation, whilst preserving core values such as integrity, responsibility, tolerance and compassion. The School has the philosophy and practical methodology that holds the key to achieving this.