Sunday, September 09, 2012

G_d!  Leftists talk a lot of sh*t at times!

And surely they know it.  They cannot be unaware that they are making huge and improbable assumptions.  That smart people tend to get rich and that their kids tend to inherit their smarts ought to be apparent even to the average Joe -- and politicians not knowing it is wilful ignorance.  But knowing those things  is all you need to understand that the children of the poor will, on average,  ALWAYS do worse at school than the children of the rich do.  The education system has a role but it will never be a Canute that will roll back the tide, no matter how much money you spend on it.  Money can't make an Einstein out of a dummy. 

And it's a wonder that the poisonous Carmen Lawrence  -- she of the bad memory -- is still opening her deceitful trap at all.  At least one person below mentions intellectual ability

Increasing segregation of students has led to a two-tiered education system with a widening gap between the "haves" and the "have-nots".

Australian students from the most disadvantaged backgrounds are up to three years behind students from more privileged backgrounds in literacy levels, according to figures compiled for the Gonski Review of Funding for Schooling. Poor students also lag well behind their wealthier peers in science and maths and are only half as likely to attend university.

Carmen Lawrence, the director of the centre for the study of social change at the University of Western Australia and a member of the Gonski review panel, said the figures busted the myth that Australia offers a fair go for all.

"For a long time there has been a willful denial that there is a problem," she said. "But we assembled all those data and they don't make pretty reading."

Disadvantaged children are concentrated in the public system, according to Gonski, with 80 per cent of children from low socio-economic backgrounds, 85 per cent of indigenous children and 79 per cent of children with disabilities in government schools.

Australia is achieving only average equity compared with other OECD countries, according to figures from the 2009 Programme for International Student Assessment survey, which ranks us behind Hong Kong, Shanghai, Finland and South Korea, which are rated in the top five performing places overall, compared with Australia at ninth spot.

The OECD reports that, among its member countries, differences in students' backgrounds accounted for 55 per cent of performance differences between schools; for Australia, the figure is 68 per cent.

Educational inequity starts when a child reaches kindergarten, according to leading experts in the field.

David Zyngier, a senior lecturer in the faculty of education at Monash University and a former teacher, said disadvantaged children have a vocabulary of 2000-3000 words at the age of six, compared with between 10,000-20,000 for wealthier children.

"When a child comes into school 50 per cent of their academic achievement is already determined by what they bring into school, that is their family background, their home, their culture and intellectual ability," he said.

"Children come to us in our classrooms with what has been called the 'invisible backpack' and some come with their backpack full of privilege and others come with a backpack of disadvantage."

Research from the UK shows that even bright children from disadvantaged backgrounds struggle to perform well academically. By the age of eight, they are overtaken by less intelligent children from more advantaged backgrounds.  [Given the "sink" schools that Britain's poor get sent to, that is no surprise]

The inequity is compounded by an education system which siphons more affluent children into the private system and high achievers into the selective system, says Chris Bonnor, a former high school principal and a Fellow of the Centre for Policy Development.

"We subsidise kids to leave low socio-economic status schools to go to higher socio-economic schools," he said. "The disadvantage at the bottom end gets worse because all the aspirant kids have gone."


Tell Nicola Everything!

An innovative campaign against Australia's proposed  Data Retention Laws

Timothy Gow sends us this idea on a practical campaign against the proposed new Big-Brotheresque Data Retention laws:

When the Canadian government attempted to pass data retention legislation through parliament, the youth of Canada responded with the twitter campaign #TellVicEverything.  A campaign telling Vic Toews, the relevant minister for Public Safety everything they want to know!

This is an excellent idea.

Nicola Roxon wants to know everything about our internet habits.  I say we take things one step further, and tell her everything.   Jump on your twitter accounts and #TellNicEverything about your day, your lunch, your gardening and your hobbies.  Make sure the ALP knows it all.   Follow the Reveal it All twitter account, or just search the #TellNicEverything hashtag and get to work.   Send all your emails to and give them what they want so badly!

Spare no details, and get the tag trending.  Let’s send a positive message to the ALP that we want them to stay out of our private business.


Couple who lost baby girl at birth says Victoria's public hospital system is worse than Sudan

A COUPLE who lost their baby girl during birth remain in the dark about why she died or where she is buried almost four years on.

Mum Loli Daoud said she received better care giving birth in her native war-torn Sudan than in Victoria's public hospital system.

The family's plight follows revelations that secret payouts of almost $25 million have been made in the past year to families whose babies suffered bungled births in the state's public hospitals.

Seven months pregnant with her fourth child, Ms Daoud arrived at Northern Hospital in mild pain with her husband, Budrus Toto, on October 21, 2008.  Soon after being admitted to the maternity ward, she felt further discomfort and went to the toilet, where her baby girl's head came out.

Through an interpreter, she told the Herald Sun: "I then fell on the ground, and labour began, and in five minutes the baby was delivered."

She had not been told to press a buzzer to alert staff in an emergency, had been too weak and dizzy to cry out for help and after the birth she lost consciousness for 20 minutes.

"When I woke up I was completely covered in blood, the baby was covered in blood and so was the floor. I crawled to the door and knocked on it for my husband to come."

Mr Toto alerted medical staff, who cut the cord, moved her to the bed and put the baby in the cot, where it is believed they tried to resuscitate her.  Her baby girl, who had been named Anna, was then taken away, dead, and Ms Daoud never saw her again.

During her two days in hospital, no one explained what had happened, but she was handed a photo of her dead daughter as she left.

Three weeks later, the couple received a phone call from the hospital asking for $300 to pay for their daughter's burial, and they were told they would receive details in the mail of the whereabouts of her remains.

The letter never arrived, and eventually they visited the hospital but still did not get any answers.  Despite twice requesting an incident report to explain what had happened that night, they have had no response from the hospital.

The couple are investigating their legal options.

Northern Health chief executive Greg Pullen said the family had been offered support.


Illegal immigrant arrests are on the rise across Victoria

MORE than 11 illegal immigrants are arrested in Victoria every week and the numbers are expected to continue to rise.  In the past financial year 612 people were arrested - up from 429 the year before.

Few of the illegal workers were likely to be asylum seekers who arrived by boat, with 517 arrested after overstaying their visa.  A further 95 were on the run following their visa being cancelled.

The figure was revealed last month as the Department of Immigration and Citizenship prepared to deport 13 illegal farm workers located in northwestern Victoria.  Nine men and four women, all Malaysian nationals, had been employed on farms as pruners.  They were caught in a 48-hour operation chasing illegal workers in the Mallee.

The detainees were transferred to Melbourne's Maribyrnong Immigration Detention Centre and nine to the Adelaide Immigration Transit Accommodation facility, pending their removal from Australia.

All had overstayed their visas and were living here unlawfully, according to the department.

Two other foreign nationals were given warnings, including a Malaysian national who was in Australia on a student visa but had not been studying.

The employer faces fines of $13,200 and two years' imprisonment per illegal worker.

In Australia there are an estimated 19,540 people who have overstayed their visa - an increase of 4430 from the 2009-10 financial year.

In response to the growing numbers of people overstaying their visas, last month the Federal Government announced a crackdown.

Immigration Minister Chris Bowen promoted the dob-in line and encouraged anyone with information about illegal workers, visa overstayers or visa fraud to call 1800 009 623.


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