JoNova

A science presenter, writer, speaker & former TV host; author of The Skeptic's Handbook (over 200,000 copies distributed & available in 15 languages).


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Seeking stories from schools and the new curriculum

Have you or your children challenged a teacher about something scientific? Were you treated fairly? Are you a teacher – if so, what are your thoughts on the new curriculum?

I would like to find out more about what is happening in our schools. I’m considering the new National Australian Curriculum, but comments related to the old curriculum and non-Australian curriculums are useful too. What kind of culture do our schools create. I would most appreciate both personal stories (privacy ensured) and comments about curriculum and educational matters. If you can’t write in comments, please email joanne AT this domain.

This link is probably the best for people who want to fossick : Australian Curriculum

Cross Curriculum Priorities are particularly concerning. There are three areas which are required to be taught in every major subject:

  1. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories and cultures
  2. Asia and Australia’s engagement with Asia
  3. Sustainability
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182 comments to Seeking stories from schools and the new curriculum

  • #
    Kevin Lohse

    My experience is that if you challenge a teacher in a UK State school about anything, you are labelled, “concerned”. If you present a coherent case, the label goes up a notch to,”articulate”. To be labelled a concerned and articulate parent is tantamount to the highest level of anti-terrorist security alert. The parent becomes a non-person and in extreme cases your child’s education suffers. The lesson learnt by the child is that being right is not necessarily sociably acceptable, as the experience of thousands of CO2= dangerous warming sceptics demonstrates.

    The UK education system is demonstrably failing the Nation’s children. In an email exchange, I asked a teacher whom I have known for many years what should be done to remedy the faults in the system. The answer was, ” Stop interfering and leave teachers to do the job.” In other words, ignore the problems and leave teachers in their comfort zone. This of course is the mantra of the Public Sector the World over. The teachers in the UK are predominately left-wing.

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    • #

      I’m afraid it is my generation of late 60s/early 70s trained teachers that are responsible for this. My ex and I were aware of this way back then, and once our oldest had finished at primary school (which were then still fine, and largely unregimented) we moved from Oxford to Bristol where we sent them to the Steiner school there. It impoverished us for a quarter of a century, but looking at the fine adults we now see before us, we have no regrets. Free thinkers, self-motivated, with no sense of entitlement.

      Better still – there are now Steiner Academies opening in the UK, making this wonderful form of education available to all.

      The UK state education is not fit for purpose. I reflect on Kevin’s post by noting the almost unanimous opposition by teachers’ unions to the free school set up. “Divisive”, it is called, and “it takes money away from other schools”.

      To which one can only reply – what is it that you, teachers, have against parents having choice in education? For this is what you are opposing. If the education you provide is as good as you say it is, then parents won’t move their kids, will they?

      There is no answer to this.

      BTW, CAGW is not taught or propagandised at Steiner schools. They do, on the other hand, study science.

      And finally – there are many Steiner schools in Oz these days I believe. Go and check one out on an open day.

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    • #
      PhilJourdan

      I guess only the English kill you with praise. In the US you are labeled a trouble maker if you disagree. If you disagree and provide evidence of their bias, you are banned from all school functions. If you then tell your story to the press, your child is expelled. Big Brother will tolerate no dissent.

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      • #

        And of course, the UN sponsored and deeply unpleasant “Common Core” is being pushed all over the states. Common core is not about education, rather, cognitive conditioning. Very nasty indeed.

        I will give the current UK government credit. Common core is being pushed worldwide, but they have not fallen for it, and Michael Gove’s Free Schools initiative is excellent, freeing schools from the dead hand of the teachers’ unions, who resent anything that takes power away from them.

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  • #
    bobl

    The curriculum needs all of the CAGW stuff revised, as it is grossly out of date, and in some places just plain wrong. There is no balance. Jo, I’ll send you privately a story about a dialogue I had with my son’s school.
    —————–
    Thank you – Jo

    182

  • #

    Great idea. And we need to recognise in advance that all of the Liberal state governments have agreed to brainwashing of children by the Left.
    I recall a person from WA saying in a blog that their curriculum is weighed down with global warming propaganda. The person also said that the ‘indigenous studies’ unit was just a two-page revisionist rant written by an ideologue in the state department. I cannot verify any of this information.
    Contributors might also like to comment on the brainwashing of children about a republic, and other symbolic issues with which the Left is preoccupied.

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  • #
    PeterS

    The culture modern schools create is that of selfishness and relativism. In other words, only look after yourself and everything is relative to the point there are no absolute truths. What is good for one is bad for another. Anything goes as long as you win. It goes beyond greed. It touches the very fabric of society and how it functions. The destruction of morals and ethics in our school system is the root cause of many of our troubles today and the future. No point changing the curriculum unless we can get back to basics and believe in absolute good and evil, namely God and Satan. Everything else is irrelevant for building a foundation in children’s values for their future.

    73

    • #
      Truthseeker

      PeterS, let’s keep religion out of our secular schools as well. Good = benefits others, Evil = harms others. We do not need to include fictional characters in our educational system.

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      • #
        PeterS

        I wasn’t referring to religion. All religions are corrupted. Either one believes in absolute truth or not. Those who reject absolute truths are destined to fail.

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        • #
          Truthseeker

          PeterS,

          I think we agree with each other. I just think the using terms like “God and Satan” is too likely to go down the religious path regardless of how allegorical the original intent was.

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  • #

    The Lib Nat members in QLD voted to get rid of climate propaganda. Though that doesn’t mean that it will happen. This is the party not the Parliament.

    No climate change in school: LNP

    THE organisational wing of the Liberal National Party has voted to “remove environmental propaganda” on climate change from Queensland schools.
    A delegate at the LNP’s three-day annual conference cited concerns “false prophets” were poisoning childrens’ minds.
    Delegates on the first day of the conference in Brisbane yesterday agreed to call on Education Minister John-Paul Langbroek to ban “post-normal science” from the curriculum and exam materials.
    LNP Noosa delegate Richard Pearson, who moved the proposal, said climate change information was being used as a strategy in schools to promote a political view, and the science was not set.

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    • #
      scaper...

      Jo, no matter what is legislated in Qld the brainwashing will continue because the principals are controlling what is taught and the LNP want to give them the powers that no right of centre party should even consider.

      The proposed reverse onus of proof is a further catalyst to enshrine the culture of the AGW proponents through the establishment of these powers. But why legislate what is already evidently happening?

      John and Hugh (IPA) are appalled and we are fighting this proposed legislation.

      We, as grown up people have lost so many of our freedoms but our youth will never realise the freedoms they have lost because we never fought hard enough to preserve them.

      So sad.

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    • #

      The Qld Libs voting to get rid of climate propaganda was a start, but it will need to go a lot further.
      Via my elected representative, I made some comments on the proposed draft curriculum a while back, among other things pointing out that some of those on “trusted” curriculum committees were purveyors of this propaganda. The response was not encouraging.
      I had more success criticising the proposed State Planning Policy on coastal hazards, eg the factoring in of a 10% increase in cyclone intensity, and the 800mm rise in sea level by 2100. Apparently he passed my comments on to the Deputy Premier’s desk. The old State Planning Policy has expired and the new one has not yet been released.
      Seems I’d be better sticking to what I know.
      I often see the effects of the warping of the curriculum, but have also been encouraged by the number of young ‘uns who know they are being lied to.

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    • #
      Albert

      A study of Meteorology should protect students from alarmist CC

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    • #

      This is a particularly important point. There is no point trying to reform the Left, because they are driven by their prejudices, hatreds and ignorance, and there is nothing you can do to change that. The real problem here is conservative government being too scared of the Left to change any of this. Take the NSW government, but this applies equally to the Queensland, Victorian and WA governments: they are still wasting money on stupid wind turbines, they still have all the Left’s green no-land-clearing and no-tree-felling laws in place, they still have their anti-free-speech fascist vilification laws in place, they still have the Left controlling education, they have not reformed the courts or policing (especially where juveniles are concerned), they are all collecting and spending record amounts of revenue, they have allowed monopolies in the professions to keep prices artificially high…those are just the things that come to mind without thinking for too long about it.

      We have to shame and pressure cowardly and incompetent Liberal state governments into putting in place a conservative agenda. For example, recently a well known journalist with The Australian ran a piece praising then Attorney-General in waiting Brandis’s public comments on free speech and the need to reform the RDA (better to repeal it). Well, let’s see if that talk becomes action. But the point is that at the same time the journalist should have LOUDLY CONDEMNED all of the Liberal state governments for being too cowardly to repeal their discrimination and vilification laws and abolish the star chambers that enforce them. The weasel Liberal premiers are hoping to do nothing, lay low, avoid criticism and try to sneak over the line at the next election. SHAME THEM.

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    • #
      Michael Rowley

      Catholic school for our kids, Need I say more. Completely closed minds on anything AGW. Principal wrote the most extraordinary load of rubbish in the newsletter last year. Vomit stuff. I once challenged him on another occasion and sent him about 20 papers disputing AGW. Stuffed up his email on his phone because of the size of the attachments. ( Haven’t laughed so much for ages)

      Australia ( hell) will freeze over before he changes his mind :(

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    • #
      Ian

      If only the LNP in Qld. could get rid of the “environmental propaganda” team at UQ. I’d love to see that

      40

  • #
    Jon

    Sustainability

    Means that the leftist and environmentalists policy based idea of the World being depleted of resources has become a political doctrine/dogma and that all the leftist policy based solutions in the Agenda 21 etc is given ideological monopoly?
    It’s a free World?

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    • #
      Jon

      Thou shall not have any other ideology/religion than our?

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    • #
      Streetcred

      “Sustainability” is pig-code for a snoutfest in the trough of other people’s money. Remember the whole “Quality Assurance” thing that cost us millions and created nothing but a useless bureaucracy of pen-pushers? And the Y2K scare ? The promoters of these ‘fads’ are unsustainable. Pity the fools who waste their money on this drivel.

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  • #
    Pat

    According to this article, no less than three quarters of UK 11-16 year olds fear for their futures (due to climate change). The author thinks that’s a wonderful thing, I think that’s an appalling indictment of a public indoctrination system.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/jon-snow/jon-snow-climate-change_b_3989413.html

    Eshitha, 14 from the UK says: “Unless we take action, I fear that by the time I reach thirty, the problems we are faced with now will seem minute in comparison to those we will be facing.”

    Cressida, 18 and from the UK expresses hope and ambition that is so lacking from my generation as she says; “We all know that climate change disproportionately affects the most vulnerable members of global society. We all know time is running out.

    The sustainability curriculum teaches fear and shame. I am to resist these tenets if they’re foisted on my offspring, and instead promote optimism and pride at humanity’s achievements, but I expect a pitched battle with an entrenched ideology.

    I have hope for you folk in Australia now you’ve booted the climate loonies out, good luck with your schools!

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    • #
      Eliza Doodle

      The guardian’s of State Education in England, seem to think that when you accept education for your children from the State then your child somehow becomes a ward of the State & separated from their parents at age 5. If you want an independent education then you ca ‘ jolly well ‘ pay for it, or provide it yourself.

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    • #
      Reinder van Til

      The powers that be learned a lot of Hegel and Herman Goering

      00

  • #
    Mark F

    Why not? A science-based one seems somewhat more likely to prepare students for real life.

    20

  • #

    The school system must be looked into and any propaganda exposed, otherwise the whole problem will fester under the surface to spring up again in another generation. The alarmists and Gang Green will be counting on it.

    Those who are anti-civilization will be planning ahead and recruiting the young – same as they did last time, and the time before that and the time before that. We’ve had communism and its ilk hidden behind the scenes at our schools from way before the Berlin Wall came down.

    My older sister was converted to communism way back in 1971 or so (age 15), I know because the creep that got her tried to get me, too – he became her boyfriend, then got me alone in a car, far from home, and preached the evils of capitalism for hours. I was 13.

    No, it didn’t happen to me in school, but its influence was rife in the schooling system. That’s where it hides and where it recruits. Hook ‘em young, keep ‘em forever – my sister is still a communist, as far as I know she’s Green (I have long been out of touch with her), and she and her communist hubby (a different bloke, not the recruiter) are part of the academia, “intellectuals” working in government circles in Canberra.

    You think they don’t try to have influence?

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  • #
    Michael

    While having these inter-curriculum priorities is distracting from real content, on close reading they are so wishy washy as to not really corrupt the main curriculum. For instance sustainability does not mention any of the known buzz words- climate change, AGW etc. or anything like it. The real worry is state Education departments- can teachers be allowed to get these distractions down to 1 lesson or less. Teachers are more likely chaotically left wing than hard focused any direction.

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  • #
    AndyG55

    I left high school maths teaching in ’98.

    I don’t actually recall there being any of the climate mumbo-jumbo in the maths syllabus.

    No idea what was in other courses, though.

    I guess the climate stuff was probably more in primary schools and the social studies areas.

    Seems to be that way, from the trolls we get here.

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    • #
      AndyG55

      I look at this page

      http://www.australiancurriculum.edu.au/Mathematics/Cross-Curriculum-Priorities#Sustainability

      And wonder what hallucinogen the person who wrote it was on. Reeks of far left agenda.

      Students have enough trouble just mastering the basic concepts of mathematics without going into all this other irrelevant stuff.

      No wonder the standard of mathematics of students coming into universities is taking such a massive plunge !!!

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      • #

        AndyG55:
        “I look at this page
        http://www.australiancurriculum.edu.au/Mathematics/Cross-Curriculum-Priorities#Sustainability
        And wonder what hallucinogen the person who wrote it was on.”

        Psilocybin ? Nah – more reminiscent of Thorazine shuffle …

        I used to promote sustainability. Still do. Has NOTHING to do with the above. It is an iterative, logical design method. How to make things (mostly buildings) that are reasonably durable, adaptable, extendable, some built-in redundancy, and cost-effective.

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        • #
          AndyG55

          I have no problems with your sort of sustainability. I’m a civil engineer.

          But I’m pretty sure that that is not what is referred to in the link! :-)

          To do the things noted in the link requires a good solid grasp of both maths and science.

          If you do these in high school, when are they going to teach that maths and science.

          All knowledge is built on foundations, and unfortunately the foundations nowadays seem to be made of mud and silt.

          60

        • #
          Speedy

          Martin

          One of the mysteries of modern politics is that “sustainability” and “future generations” are the by-words of leftist governments who waste resources on tokenistic pet projects and pork-barreling policies.

          Since when is wastefulness “sustainable”? Why are “future generations” going to be grateful for this?

          Cheers,

          Speedy

          50

    • #

      Math and “hard” sciences are more difficult by their very nature, to infiltrate with nonsense than the subjects learnt essentially by rote. Things that have to be accepted because the student cannot independently test them (without failing!).

      Arts, “social studies”, history and economics are the major playing fields of political indoctrination. Sciences such as biology and geology less so.

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  • #

    Children are defenceless against this kind of manipulation, it is beyond despicable. Their minds are programmed to absorb an enormous amount of information, especially during their younger years. The penalty for such high rates of information acquisition is a suspension of disbelief. This is why children so easily believe things which aren’t true, santa claus, the faraway tree, harmless stories mostly. But it is also an opportunity for scum to insert their own messages and brainwashing, at an age at which children have no real defences against this abuse.

    They can’t reach thinking adults with their nonsense, so they’re going to try to warp the minds of our children.

    This is beyond despicable. In my opinion it is a form of child abuse. Whoever inserted this disgusting propaganda into our children’s curriculum should be dismissed, and banned from ever working in the field of education again.

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    • #
      Mark D.

      Eric, you are right it is despicable.

      However children learn first at home. If parents (grandparents, uncles and aunts) do their job then the child has a better chance of recognizing agenda over learning. But then you have to also teach them to be very careful about how they counter agenda based “education”. I recall some years ago my son came home from Elementary school after witnessing a classmate in tears over how the world was going to end from global warming. This is evidence of child abuse as far as I’m concerned. People should be held responsible for this as a crime.

      I have successfully raised 3 children to skeptical adulthood. Skeptical of much more than AGW. You should hear the conversation when we are all together watching the news!

      We should begin teaching children at an early age about how to recognize propaganda. That will go a long way towards inoculating them against manipulation.

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    • #

      Eric, you are absolutely correct. This kiddie warping is international though, and massive.

      I’m seeing textbooks full of propaganda, kids are taught they’ll likely be a DJ, film producer or sound engineer or similar, in a fairytale world where all this electronic kit grows on trees.

      When it comes to climate, the propaganda steps up a gear. I’ve seen Mathematics text books asking students to project where temperatures are going based on a graph of 20th century temps and the graph has the cooling decades removed and leaves students with the simple task of connecting dots in straight line onwards and upwards, convincing themselves in the process.

      The conclusion is that this doesn’t originate from some lefty or idealistic teacher or educational board, nor is it some form of mass hysteria, it comes from much higher up.

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    • #
      John Brookes

      You are so right Eric! Only religion and right wingers should be allowed to influence young impressionable minds.

      03

      • #
        MemoryVault

        .
        Funny how our resident trolls are shit scared of going anywhere near the current thread.

        Eh, John?

        30

      • #
        Kevin Lohse

        You and your fellow acolytes have have been given a free run In state education in influencing young and impressionable minds with Left-wing politics and Climastrology, vigorously denying access to other opinions. Point at the beam in your own eye, John.

        20

      • #
        PhilJourdan

        So you would rather lies and half truths be used?

        10

  • #
    scaper...

    This is a post from last week here to is relevant to this topic.

    I am concerned for the children that are being indoctrinated by the education system. Was somewhat sceptical at first but now believe it to be true.

    Evidence? Well it was tried on my fourteen year old daughter!

    Last year she was set an assignment on comparative electricity generation options. It was set out to favour renewables against the nasties, she recognised the subtlety over the years and it was enough!

    Said to the teacher concerned that she will refuse to do said assignment. Was sent to the headmistress and engaged in a heated debate that ultimately led to discrimination and vilification.

    Was called into the school and was drawn into a heated debate that resulted in the eventual changing of schools. Obviously, her reputation of being not one to be spoon fed rubbish preceded her and the victimisation continued to the point of verbal warfare which not only resulted in exclusion from that school but the refusal by other schools to enrol her. Denied the right to be educated!

    Took my complaint to the Qld Minister for Education that offered to veto the last refusal of enrolment but I declined the offer. The only options are home education or distance education, commencing next year.

    These warmists are definitely indoctrinating our children and I see no clear strategy of fighting this and fear for the young minds.

    I’ve had conversations with my daughter since and they were most revealing.

    The girl has been bombarded without my knowledge, by global warming alarmism since she was six. Has been recently been called the foul names that we have endured by her ex-friends because she does not accept the consensus and same with the so called white invasion and the stolen generation.

    Our youth have been saddled with this guilt, if these accusations were indeed true, it is not their fault but many bear the guilt.

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    • #

      Hang in there buddy, it’s all worth it.

      20

    • #
      Winston

      Unfortunately, regardless of whether CAGW doctrine enters retreat or not, the inexorable decline in education in Western society is a fait accompli. A perfect storm of stupidity means that generations are doomed to spin into a vortex of ignorance. A number of these drivers are deliberate, others circumstantial.

      The circumstantial developments includes the decline of popular reading, both in terms of literature as a form of artistic and intellectual expression, and in authoritative factual references (e.g Brittanica) which have been supplanted by the superficial, repetitive and highly manipulated Internet “Readers Digest” version. Young people see no reason to memorize or retain any factual data at all because one simply googles the factoid so now knowledge itself is redundant.

      Add to that the pervasive influence of TV, a stultifying influence even in its best exemplars that once aspired to quality in some small degree but has been drowned in a morass of dross designed to merely distract, time waste and engage in a sub-intellectual way. This efficiently reduces the drive and desire to engage with other human minds on the higher level of literature, which drove the intellectual curiosity of succeeding generations for centuries.

      Then, add social media and smartphones, who endlessly distract young minds with the minutae of their friends every mood change, relationship status fluctuation, and every bowel movement or nocturnal emission. Smartphones de-skill to the point that most young adults cannot look up a phone book, read a road map, follow verbal directions, use an index, or even hold a conversation with their peers, so much so that it is not unusual for 4 silent individuals to sit down to dinner together without the need for eye contact.

      Then we have the pervasive totalitarianism of the social regulation of conversational discourse, so fraught with restrictive rules of engagement that any conversation above the banal is beyond the pale, and any deviation from accepted “wisdom” is met with social vilification and ostracism. This invisible suffocating framework allows assumptions to go unchallenged, falsehoods to be perpetuated, and groupthink to be the norm.

      Finally, the deliberate. The National Curriculum is an exercise in lowest common denominator education, unfettered by any need for teaching innovation, while deliberately avoiding the slightest hint of competition which might highlight inconvenient evidence of true best practice for the betterment of student outcomes. This is a slackers paradise, made worse by teachers disdain for merit based assessment, due to their indoctrination in social justice mantra which frowns on achievers due to their “unequal social capital” meaning that one should not achieve above the level of those who reside on the lowest socioeconomic strata. UNESCOs influence in favour caring and sharing social justice, global citizen outcomes over objective reasoning skills, social networks over individuality and self- reliance, and the anathema of inquiring minds and analytical thinking has been not merely an unintended consequence, but a deliberate policy.

      The net result is that any extra money applied to education is doomed to return zero. Our children and grandchildren are doomed to be dumber than a box of rocks, distracted, dumbed down, incapable of problem solving and totally dependent on a welfare state that will ultimately suck every last vestige of human potential out of them, keeping them in a state of perpetual ignorance and fear.

      But of course, I’m probably being a bit optimistic in all this.

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      • #
        AndyG55

        Hey, nice rant Winston. :-)

        trouble is, I have a feeling its all just a bit too close to reality !! :-(

        50

        • #
          Winston

          To clarify further,
          It is not the “fault” of our children or grandchildren that they will lack these skills that we take for granted, as these have been denied access to them by circumstance, both accidental and by design.

          It would also be tempting to think that this is just a regressive phase in a cyclical process of human intellectual evolution, but I actually think we may have reached the peak of our biological capacity as a species some 25 years ago. The advent of computerization, while laudable and perhaps valuable tools in some respects, is intrinsically changing our patterns of thought, our concentration spans are diminishing as is our ability to process complex contextual information creatively. I am pessimistic that we are capable of recognizing let alone overcoming such a challenge to our limited cognitive abilities.

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      • #
        Spetzer86

        From the USA, seeing many of these things. Our Common Core education thrust will be putting us in knee deep. If interested, here’s a link to a site digging into various aspects of this new system:

        http://www.invisibleserfscollar.com/category/common-core/

        10

      • #
        Neville

        Hey Winston,
        we wish you’d simply come out and say what you mean, instead of beating around the bush!!
        /humour

        But seriously, I’ve never been more inclined to agree with someone so strongly about this issue. VERY well said, mate!

        With my kids, I attempted to maintain a sensible approach to their education in “the system” by pretty much constant monitoring of what they were ‘learning’, and explaining to them the precursors, differences, contrasts, and consequences. Hope I did OK – they seem fairly straightforward these days, with reasonably well-developed bullshit detectors!

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    • #

      Well, Campbell Newman, it is on you to put a stop to this, or are you just going to be like all the other Liberal premiers and hope to weasel your way out of having to deal with it? Are you Can Do Campbell or is that just a line being spun for the gullible?

      All individuals with influence – journalists, academics, people in business and backbenchers – should use their personal contact with political leaders to agitate for action on this and many other issues on which the Left have been setting and running the agenda for so many years. Many people now see the Howard government era for what it was – 11 wasted years in which the Left continued to control the agenda in this country. We can’t let this happen again during the Abbott era. It is time to put a stop to it.

      But don’t let the Liberal premiers weasel their way out of this. For example, why on earth are we reading today about hundreds more wind turbines being proposed for the Yass region in New South Wales. Would someone please tell me what is the use of the O’Farrell government to us. What is the difference between the O’Farrell government and a Labor government. They have not dealt with education, the courts, justice, policing, infrastructure, green laws, vilification laws (in fact they want to strengthen them that more people can be jailed), building costs, electricity costs, etc. They have just made things worse. As a ‘conservative’ government they are a DISGRACE. Don’t let them get away with it.

      10

  • #
    Yonniestone

    Jo I would like to email you a story on this subject that directly affected my family.
    As I’ve never emailed you the only address I have is support@joannenova.com.au is this ok to use?

    [Use joanne (AT) joannenova(dot)com(dot)au] ED

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  • #
    A C

    A friend of mine was teaching science at a major Western Australian private school. One of the key texts they used of course was Al Gore (and his movie). I indidcated to him that these could not be used in UK schools by court order without the falsehoods being explained to the students. He was totally unaware of the UK decision and, whats more, was uninterested in the implications.
    They also taught Rabbit Proof Fence book and movie as some sort of factual account.
    I tried to point him in the direction of the counter argument but if I had told him I believed that the moon was made of cheese he would have been less surprised. They only ever hear one side of any story – and utterly reject any opposing thought as just unthinkable.

    I believe it is the ABC. They just believe what ever they are told, and refuse to hear any alternative points of view especially if if requires them to go against the paradigm.

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    • #
      Eliza Doodle

      I remember Sir Keith Josef, the then Education Secretary visiting our University.
      He was more popular than Mrs. Thatcher at a miner’s rally but only slightly.

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      • #
        Kevin Lohse

        Yes. The Left had control of the educational establishment even then, and Mrs Thatcher’s reforms of Universities, particularly in regards to privileges attached to tenure and the requirement to teach, had threatened their comfortable ivory tower existence. Sir Keith was an academic himself, and the mindless hatred thrown at him for being a Tory was outside his expectations. Fascist tactics had become part of the Left’s political tool bag even that long ago.

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  • #
    Joe V.

    Is Orwell prescribed reading in any classrooms ?
    It is interesting how today we have ever more subtle, more ‘inclusive’ and more ‘sustainable’ forms or the tyranny. Their ideas now permeate supra-national, would-be and actual, governmental institutions such as the EU, the UN and the IMF.
    Deprive the citizenry of something, to make them dependent and grateful for the few crumbs we let fall to them.

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    While we sometimes despair for our youth, that they are being fed information that may be slanted in one direction, I, oddly do have some hope for them, well, some of them anyway.

    I base this around actual experience with the youth of today, in this case, our grand daughter who is in Grade 10. She attends the local RC high school, and it’s huge, a little larger even than the 2 main State High Schools here in Rockhampton. Now, while I say here RC, and one of the core subjects is in fact Religion, I have helped her often with her assignments, some of them for that Religion subject, and in fact, they are more History based than outright Religion. And oddly, parents literally crawl over each other to enrol their children at this RC school, so they are very selective with who goes there, as our grand daughter does not come from a RC background at all.

    When it comes to her School assignments, Poppy (that’s me) is the go to man evidently, first recommended by our daughter (her Mother) and now almost second nature.

    Although she has yet to front me up for a Science project, (boring subject she says) we have in fact actually talked Science, and it wasn’t even a point for discussion when it first cropped up.

    Our daughter refers to it as ‘Dad’s Party Trick’, the fact that I can rattle off, at pace, the first 50 elements in the Periodic Table.

    Now there was a a reason for that, going all the way back to my high school days when I was just starting Science. I couldn’t figure out the Valency tables and in those days we had to virtually memorise them down pat. As we only dealt with the first ten or a dozen elements, I just memorised them. I played cricket, well, until I was 42 anyway, more than 30 years. The fast bowling coach at High School was one of the Science teachers and after training one evening, I asked him about Valency, and he explained the outer shell donor/acceptor electron thing, and that’s the best way I can explain it here. Once I had sorted out the shell sizes, and then memorised the first dozen atoms, I could then work out that donor acceptor thing, and I found that actually easier than memorising the valency tables.

    Then, after joining the RAAF, and in second year, during Transistor theory, we were just getting around to those new fangled things, Semiconductors, and donor and acceptor material that they doped the Base with, making it either NPN or PNP transistors. That’s where the valency table thing came back to haunt me, as now we were working with elements beyond the dozen or so I had memorised. So, to get around that, I then put to memory the first 50, just to be sure, and I already knew the shell size thing anyway. It has stuck with me.

    Our daughter got me to rattle them off, and our grand daughter was there, listening intently.

    The others forgot about it, and later she came up to me and asked why I remembered something like that, because, as she said to me, we will only ever do Science at school, and then never again in our lives.

    I explained it to her why I did it in the first place, and her interest was piqued, as she wanted to know a little more than the ‘party trick’ aspect.

    So I used my old stand by, Carbon Dioxide.

    Carbon has 4 electrons in it’s outermost shell, and Oxygen has 6 electrons in its outermost shell.

    So to fill the outer shell (8 electrons) for the Oxygen atom, it requires 2 electrons. So that one atom of Carbon binds tightly with 2 atoms of Oxygen, filling the outer shells of both Oxygen atoms hence the tight bond, Now as those electrons are whizzing around at amazing speed, the Carbon atom is now also fat dumb and happy because, even though it shares its 4 electrons with the Oxygen atoms, it also thinks its outer shell is full also, as the three atoms now share all their electrons in the outer shell. Hence, we now have a very stable Carbon Dioxide.

    At each step of the explanation of this to our grand daughter, I dropped hints to see if she was ‘getting it’. She knew, well, sort of, about the outer shell thing and the atomic number thing and how by knowing the shell sizes, all this could be worked out.

    It was like a light bulb coming on at the end as she grasped the big picture. I mentioned to her that while this worked (of a fashion) for me, not to rely on it when doing her Science, as it’s just another way to look at it.

    What surprised me most was that she actually stayed interested., and I’m certain she learned something from it.

    So, while her Mother sees it as basically just a ‘party trick’, she saw it as an added tool that may, just may come in handy.

    What heartened me was that when she came back at a later time, the memorising of the elements was not something she remembered the most, but she wanted to ask again about the electron shell size part of the whole.

    So, while we may only get part of the picture, and it always seems to be that the children are being fed propaganda, I have noticed that they tend to ask more questions than those of my era did, and from that questioning, not just their teachers, but others not from that schooling system, they actually are taking things in.

    Oddly, when I(surreptitiously) asked her about what she was being taught in the way of this climate change debate, she was offhand, almost to the point of referring to it as (and I’ll just say Bovine waste here). So, I’m of the opinion that our children maybe have more brains than we give them credit for, well, I know one who has more brains than I did at that age anyway.

    Tony.

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      AndyG55

      Yep, that co-ordination chemistry sure is fun, isn’t it ! :-)

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        AndyG55

        ps, I wouldn’t push that shell stuff too far. I have a fairly reliable source that says it may not be entirely correct.

        Works for a good base level understanding though.

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          Speedy

          Damn transition elements!

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            AndyG55

            I think what my source was saying was that the whole theory was a bit “iffy”.

            I know its what we were all taught, but that doesn’t mean it was all that correct.

            Like all science…. knowledge can change.

            Science is never settled ;-)

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      Peter C

      I imagine that you initially memorized the first 18 elements, which comprise the first three lines of the periodic table.
      H. He
      Li Be B C N O F Ne
      Na Mg Al Si S Cl Ar
      They cover all the elements that we commonly encounter, and neatly illustrate the concept of the electron shells. I still think that this has been some of the most interesting stuff I have learned. It is amazing that the periodic table was worked out long before quantum theory and electron shells, just from comparing physical properties of elements.

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      Speedy

      Tony

      Here’s a challenge for you – from Tom Lehrer, with some help from Gilbert + Sullivan – “The Periodic Table”.

      http://www.privatehand.com/flash/elements.html

      Cheers,

      Speedy

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      The electron shell model is an old one. It works for “simple” stuff like valences and the effect in chemistry.

      Unfortunately, the model breaks down when one looks at the quantum detail so “subshells” need to be added; or the whole electron model treated as a probabilistic cloud. (Probably other models too; those are just the ones that I can think of.)

      One tries to use the simplest model that works for the application, but must be aware of that model’s limits.

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      Ken Stewart

      Hi Tony, do you live in Rocky too? Can I contact you somehow? (If so I’ll ask Jo to link us.)

      Nice storm last night.

      Ken

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    Great topic Jo, as important as anything we’ve ever covered. Those of us who chose to bring children into this world owe them a duty of care, that being (amongst others) an education unadulterated by the shallow subjective pitfalls that we tangle ourselves up in. We owe them nothing less than the truth. We should demand it from their educators. Where we lie to them, we indoctrinate them and in effect prevent them from discovering their own truths and seeing the truth in others. I know that all sounds a bit pompous but you only have to look around you and see how much damage regimented groupthink teaching is doing to our kids and it’s not their fault. They were never given all the facts. Where does that leave us. I have intervened in the past, been grudgingly acknowledged (sort of) and then had the distinct feeling that my child was singled out.

    It looks like we will win this AGW battle but we may end up revisiting it when the next generation of misleducated malcontents hit the corridors of power and influence.

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    Peter Q

    Aaargh!!! Yet again some uninformed person has tried to equate the Y2K problem with mythical problems like CAGW. Y2K was real – many systems were 25+ years old and had either been created in the belief that they would be replaced before 31/12/99 or on systems that only handled 2 digit years. The technical issues were real. Systems written in the 1970s were still in use in finance, government, utilities, etc. Term deposit systems had already been bodged to get around termination dates beyond 1999, inevitably in short term, least cost ways because by then IT was in the hands of the management class. It didn’t matter if you explained how a $50k fix was cheaper over a few years than the $5k fix, all “management” wanted was a quick and dirty fix. Oh, and to know why a couple of years later the problem needed fixing again!
    All of the interminable testing of systems for Y2K compliance was a management and consultant boondoggle, usually without any real IT input. I worked on a total system rewrite for a government agency that was specifically written in an environment that handled the whole date, not just the last 2 digits of the year, and they STILL spent our taxes on a full Y2K test.
    End rant, and realise there are parallels – a real problem (Y2K was real, climate change is real), hyped by a blood sucking group seeking to divert the gravy train their way (management and consultants, IPCC and management and consultants).

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      AndyG55

      Chuckle. I was working for a tech dept in Optus at the time.

      We got the job of changing out all the old computers and software.

      Lots of overtime, lots of loading up computers with disc images.

      I got the extra job of contacting all the different little sections all over the country (all the other guys were young techies) and hunting down upgrades for strange little bits of software for talking between hand held devices and computers.

      Was quite fun while it lasted.

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        AndyG55

        The other Y2K job I did was at CSIRO in North Ryde, hunting down and logging all the computers I could find.

        Some of the researchers were very reluctant to even let me touch their old 286′s to get the serial numbers off them, and certainly did NOT want them changed out. (one of them actually made me read the numbers with a mirror. Then gave me a nice cup of his special coffee, while we chatted.) It was a nice relaxing job, but paid well :-) I even created a new space on the log sheet saying “do not remove this computer”, so they ended up keeping the old one, and getting a new Pentium 3 as well.

        I ran into one of the guys only a couple of years ago, and he said that he still had the old 286 data-logging his experiments through his hand-coded dos system :-)

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      Indeed. I worked on library systems – whilst there was nothing critical, had we not fixed the y2k bug all sorts of odd things would have happened, especially with regard to loan periods which crossed y2k.

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    Edward

    As a Deputy Principal of a Senior Secondary Campus and ex Mathematics teacher I have some very serious concerns with the education of our youth.
    Predominantly, teachers promote perspectives that are typically from the left side of politics, the politically correct side, apparently.
    The issue is not the curriculum but more the beliefs and values of the vast majority of teachers, group-think if you like. Scientific processes, logical and empirical argument fall by the wayside in the name of ‘saving the planet’. Questioning and contrarian viewpoints are not welcome and frequently invite ridicule and scorn. Mathematics teachers along with the teachers of the Physical Sciences tend to be the exceptions. Unfortunately, these teachers tend to be dying breed and when they leave they are often replaced by teachers who have qualifications in the Life Sciences. Biology trained teachers are now the new teachers of Physics. Generally, their adherence to the scientific process and empirical methods are not nearly as evident as those that they are replacing.
    My belief is that many of our new generation of science teachers struggle to appreciate, for example, that correlation does not imply causality.

    (Their hearts are often in the right places!)

    Don’t get me started on English and Social Science teachers!

    Our schools have been heavily infiltrated by environmental interest groups who provide resources, competitions that promote their viewpoints, none supported by empirical evidence. These resources are readily incorporated into teaching program’s by teachers who are sympathetic to ‘the cause’.

    The indoctrination of our youth is well underway and beyond the fix of the new curriculum.

    That said, I’m a big fan of the Maths curriculum! All we need to do is find teachers who are capable of teaching it, at least in public schools!

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      Thank you Edward, I’ll be in touch with an email (and am writing to some other teachers in this thread as well – like Paul). These comments have been very helpful.

      “Biology trained teachers are now the new teachers of Physics. “

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        Brian G Valentine

        The question is, how long will it last?

        Soviet Communists purged all the schools of books and teachers found “counter-Revolutionary,” the whole thing went on from about 1948-1990, then the Russians found themselves digging out of the economic misery this created.

        Is it really necessary to have 40 years of this to end up in a mess that takes 50 years to recover from?

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    The triumph of Kant!

    Kant set out to destroy reason to save faith and has done it. Perhaps only to 97% but that is good enough for government work. We of the 3% have several lifetimes of work ahead of us.

    As it is, the world is sinking into a madness from which the return will be slow, painful, and fraught with failure. It need not be that way because man can always choose a better path. The question is: will that choice be made soon enough to make a real difference?

    He who is free, never submits. He who submits, was never free. Stay free!

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    Leo Morgan

    I want to spread the motto “Whale oil is sustainable”, to encourage our Green acquaintances to think about their cognitive dissonance.
    Oh all right, that’s not going to happen, and I know it. The real reason is jut to give them the irrits.
    A propos of the educational system I have little to say that’s directly on point for the Curriculum.
    Nevertheless I want to take the opportunity to deplore the way Tertiary Education has succumbed to PowerPoint Hell. It used to be that only the absolute worst of all teachers spent the lecture reading to the class. Now it’s obligatory. Every student who has advanced beyond Kindergarten level suffers intellectual agonies.
    Used properly, PowerPoint could provide every lecturer with any conceivable image to use as a visual aid, but that is just not happening. Let’s encourage student unions to go on major protests about this.
    A while back, I was acting as a scrutineer at a polling booth in a school in a lower socio-economic area. There was a ‘disputes resolution policy’ on the wall, with an escalating list of penalties. Nowhere was there any provision for the possibility the teacher was in the wrong.
    I recommend that anyone who wants to encourage science enthusiasm in school students should smuggle Robert Heinlein’s Junior Science Fiction novels into school libraries. Do avoid the ones after he went crazy.

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    Hi Jo,

    I noticed someone had linked to me and read about what you are looking into. I do indeed have the info you are seeking and your Core Skills links to what is our Common Core. The global 21st century skills push is headquartered at the University of Melbourne even though US is a participant. http://www.invisibleserfscollar.com/if-education-transforms-values-and-feelings-and-beliefs-to-control-behaviors-are-we-free/ is a story I did in 2012 on how school climate and the Australian wellbeing frameworks tie to the US social and emotional learning instead of the transmission of knowledge emphasis.

    The consistency of the sustainability emphasis globally is due to the role of UN agencies like UNESCO as well as the OECD in both education and pushing Green Growth as a lucrative way to structure a cronyistic economy guided by the public sector. I have a book coming out that will also answer many questions apart from the blog.

    Welcome to the global conversation where the sunlight of disclosure is the best disinfectant.

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      Roy Hogue

      if-education-transforms-values-and-feelings-and-beliefs-to-control-behaviors-are-we-free

      Quite a telling URL!

      The UN’s influence is the biggest thing we need to fight.

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    Roy Hogue

    I haven’t had a child in school for many years. But when I did I couldn’t see any sign of the madness now being taught. And my son turned out to be a staunch conservative like his father without my having to fight for it. He went through a bachelor’s degree in communication in 4 years and without getting arrested, suspended, using drugs or any other problem except a troublesome old car. I’m quite proud of him.

    I’m left wondering what difference there would be if he was starting out to school for the first time today. I can’t simply visit a classroom these days to see what’s really going on (they used to welcome that). But I’m afraid of what I might find if I could.

    The local grammar school he attended has turned into, Earth’s Technology Magnate School. That name alone scares me.

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      PhilJourdan

      Thinking for yourself takes intelligence. Rote repetition does not. Your son inherited your intelligence. Most kids are too lazy to think for themselves.

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      Eddie Sharpe

      Methinks that’s ‘magnet’ , as in:-

      magnet school

      1. a public school with special programs and instruction that are not available elsewhere in a school district and that are specially designed to draw students from throughout a district, especially to aid in desegregation.

      And EARTHS is an acronym, for Environmental Academy of Research Technology and EartH Sciences (EARTHS) , but yes it does seem contrived to fit some sort of aspiration.

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        Roy Hogue

        Methinks you’re right, Eddie. Been too long since I even drove by the place, much less had any interaction with it — been too long since I took spelling lessons too. :-(

        However, the problem isn’t segregation but choice of a better school for many parents.

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      I think that the influence of the parents is very important in the development of individual thinking. Recently I suggested that those responsible for the education and raising of children could potentially treat any day as April 1st. Try to fool them with increasingly-complex but plausible ideas relating to what is going on that day. Obvious caveats apply.

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    Rod Stuart

    It occurs to me that the socialist experiment conducted in Eastern Europe a century ago demonstrated that government cannot efficiently and effectively deliver any good or service.
    Why then, do we in the West insist that the education of our children is a legitimate role for government? If the excuse is that otherwise, some people might miss out, then how is that better than the current situation in which everyone apparently misses out?
    If goods and services are best delivered to customers by the private sector, why do we insist on “public” schools?
    If I choose to purchase a consumer good, I make the decision as to which best serves my needs. Why am I denied the opportunity to select the institution which best serves the educational needs of my children?
    If your answer is I might not make the right choice, then my response is that at least it is my responsibility for making that choice; not someone else. If your response is that it might not be fair to my children, then are you not delusional in thinking that life is fair?

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    Apoxonbothyourhouses

    The problem starts with the fact that the vast majority of teachers have never worked in the real world – same but more so for academics. It’s school > training college / university > back to school to teach. They therefore have little if any appreciation of what it is have to sales targets, deadlines, competitors etc. They believe they do but theirs has been such a cloistered life …

    Until we employ teachers who are capable of independent thought there will be ongoing problems though how you do that God only knows. Two incidents:

    At a parents’ night the teacher was commenting that one of my daughters was not following convential wisdom. She was shocked when I replied that this was wonderful news.

    Fast forward to a teenage granddaughter. We had exchanged banter on AGW; she had to do an essay so I said make up your mind but consider how to explain the 17 year pause, previous warm / cold periods etc. Alas instead of a challenging approach the essay regurgitated consensus Cook’s 95% etc. so no encouragement to sift fact from fiction; no suggestion that there are two viewpoints [but maybe she wanted a pass].

    The principle in science of challenging the established theory seems to have been lost and you will never get teachers emerging from the current training colleges to espouse that concept. There’s a much easier life by just slavishly following consensus.

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    In 2007 the guy in charge of the Western Australian Leaving Physics curriculum was a dyed in the wool AGW supporter. We were both at one of my niece’s wedding and I overheard him talking to somebody else about AGW and how James Hansen had given us 5 years to stop burning coal or we were doomed. I couldn’t help myself and mentioned that Hansen was a whackjob. It got a little more interesting from there as we were on opposite sides of the same table for the rest of the evening. LOL!
    There’s no hope really when clueless idiots like that are teaching kids.

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      Peter C

      Ho Ho Ho! I bet it got interesting.
      Did the rest of the table guests get up and leave you to it?

      I wanted going to turn our dinner table conversations into a global warming discussion/argument on our last cruise, especially when the retired FBI agent quoted the 97% concensus. It was clearly 7 against 1, but I wasn’t deterred. Unfortunately my dear wife shut me down (said she would take all my money in the divorce).

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        Rod Stuart

        Yuk yuk. We were on a cruise a year ago and at lunch a Kiwi farmer mentioned that he could afford the fare because he had let ‘them’ build windmills on his farm.
        I jumped in, of course, slagging the wind generation concept, and in general putting in my two cents worth about ‘global warming’.
        Well another bloke at the table was your dyed in the wool warmist and the fun began.
        I got a few people interested in the topic and as I had Watt’s “Don’t sell your coat” and another book that I loaned out to some curious Kiwis, but the ship had a guest speaker who was also skeptical, so it was a hot conversation for a week or two.

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    Ruzinfruz

    When I trained as a technology teacher, I also trained with a large number of ex trades people from country areas. We were even then required to give the “aboriginal perspective” and in the lecture where this was spelt out my mate next to me asked this:

    “Where I live there are two tribes. They hate each other. They have been at war since before the whites came. If you are friends with one of them, then you are regarded as an enemy by his enemies. Which aboriginal perspective do you want me to teach?”

    The answer came in the form of academic censure. He was interviewed in front of a committee and “re-educated”.

    I now roll my eyes at mention of invasion day and lessons about the aboriginal contribution to architecture. As a teacher I have it down on paper that I teach this stuff, but I don’t really. It is condescending, trivial and works to hold aboriginal people back in some utopic dreamtime that never really existed.

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      Roy Hogue

      Ruzinfruz,

      We have something of a similar situation with the so-called Native-Americans, the Indians who were here before the white man came to North America. The net result is that the Native-American is surrounded by a world that is succeeding but they don’t join it and also begin to succeed. Instead they talk about preserving their culture and remaining in their own little world. As a result they suffer. And we work to keep them that way and dependent so the do-gooders can feel good about themselves. They could — and it’s arguably obvious that they could — simply join the world that is succeeding without losing or forgetting their cultural heritage. But they don’t. And the white man encourages this nonsense.

      It’s the same with other minority groups. They become a protected species and that is the death of their future. And now “the poor” in general are such a protected species.

      It is terrible to behold and I hate it but it’s hard to get many people to even listen. So dependency rules instead of a meaningful life.

      I know exactly what you’re talking about.

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    Pete of Freo

    My son was regularly marked down, shouted down and subjected to ridicule by both Science and Social Science teachers at his Western Australian Government High School because he refused to accept the ACGW cant and the unscientific, Religio-political Evolution cant. His Geography teacher (who was also a Head of Department) told him that he and his parents should be split up and taken to re-education camps. His “science” teacher informed him and his whole class that “People who believe in a Creative God are just superstitious idiots.”
    I spoke to the staff concerned and was told that my son was not to use his assessment work as a platform for espousing the religious and political views into which his parents had indoctrinated him because the school encouraged “free thinking”. I’m still gfawing at that one!
    Evolution is the elephant in the room Jo; it’s all very well to howl down the consensus view in relation to ACGW but to accept the consensus view regarding the unscientific, Religio-political, un-demonsterable Theory of Evolution smacks a little of hypocrisy.

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      Roy Hogue

      Pete,

      Your comment reminds me to be very grateful that we could afford to have our son in a private school for his first 3 years where he was taught to read, write and understand his native language properly (no experimental “sight reading” but honest phonics) before we were forced to transfer him to the public schools. We read to him constantly and when the child can read and understand and does read widely, he’s very hard to bamboozle by those who seek to subvert his thinking ability for their own purposes. When you don’t need someone else to explain it because you can read it yourself they don’t like it. But once that cat is out of the bag they can’t ever get it back in again.

      I had that benefit myself and once the secret of written language was unlocked for me — that the letters and groups of letters making up a word stood for the sounds you make when you speak the word — the world became my oyster. I read everything from science fiction and adventure stories to technical books on how radio, television, electricity and electric motors work. I didn’t have any of the required math background then but the verbal descriptions of what goes on opened the world of technology for me. I’m not any great intellectual prodigy, I simply had a burning curiosity about the world around me. And books (with a little help from a library card) opened up that world.

      If there’s one single thing we can do for our children it’s to teach them to read, understand and then want to read.

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    While I abhor the use of any propaganda techniques in school, I believe that the majority of our young people are actually quite resistant to it. It is simply not cool to follow teacher’s advice. Young people like to rebel and this applies to climate as it does to religion. Of course there will be a minority who lap it up and a few who become very concerned by it, just as there are some children who worry about health issues etc.

    There is a UK website which specifically looks at the subject of climate lessons the link is climatelessons It has a lot of interesting and informative material.

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    Retired now

    I was brought up to think like a scientist both from school and because Dad was a research pathologist. When I turned my science trained mind onto what was considered fact in the 1960s and 1970s I realised that much of what was promoted as scientific fact was culture, opinion and thinking as bad as any leftie thinking of today. Women could learn to think as well as men. People of colour were not genetically of lower intelligence. Much of the science we were taught has now been changed as both basic science changes with new evidence and also because certain assertions were never scientific in the first place. “Truth” was never absolute or pure. It was always affected by language, culture and politics.

    I ended up becoming a trained scientist in later years and a full time researcher for more than a decade, finding that politics and various agenda dominated all the research I did. There was no value free exploration of the evidence. It was contaminated from the first thoughts of research design, how we phrased the research question, which evidence we were choosing through to how we wrote up the paper so it would get published. I eventually left because I realised that my colleagues (lovely people though they might be) were basically corrupted by the need to keep receiving a pay packet so they were prepared to stretch the “truth” so far it was beyond that where I could continue.

    Now I was also brought up to be socialist and a greenie. I was a member of a 1970s greenie organisation and have always had an interest in sustainability. I think that both people and the environment matter and that some things can be done much better than they are.

    Having said that I have been totally dismayed and horrified by the AGW fiasco, the political machinations and what passes for science these days.

    I would find it helpful if we got rid of the labels of conservative/right and left wing from this discussion because while I’m extremely conservative in some ways I’m extremely left in others. I don’t want to throw the baby out with the bathwater in claiming that there is a real truth out there that we can identify.

    But then again we can’t say anything goes, because it surely doesn’t. The best we can do is as Jo does here – define our terms, write clearly, be challenged by our findings, hold our findings up to public scrutiny, review and rethink based on feedback from others and stay open to the evidence. We also have to be prepared to change our beliefs based on actual evidence as we understand it.

    And while I understand that we get irritated by what passes for science I find name calling very unhelpful whether by my “side” (as on this website), or by AGW adherents.

    Also while you are on the educational review how about reviewing what is being taught by Murdoch university sustainability degree course?

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    Tiresome

    Fascinating – so Jo is worried about the teaching of climate change in schools and oh the poor little dears having their minds corrupted.

    Reality drugs being traded in playgrounds, more bullying, teachers struggling for control of behaviour, cyber-stalking, cyber-porn

    Always interesting what the libertarians and extreme right sooks about. Yet another TIRESOME day on the double standards

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      Winston

      There is nothing wrong with teaching Anthropogenic Global Warming in schools provided there is dispassionate presentation that defines terms accurately, instead of weasel words like “climate change”, that delineates known facts from factoids, hypothesis from theory, theory from laws of nature, and speculation from evidence. Honest acknowledgement of areas of uncertainty, the limitations of global temperature measurements, the limitations of proxies for ancient climate approximations, etc.

      Or do you honestly contend that it is OK to preach everything in this issue,from the factual data to the religious zealotry as facts of equal standing and of equal evidentiary merit? If so then you are clearly more interested in indoctrinating than educating, and are exactly the sort of person who should have as little to say as possible on this issue to prevent embarrassing yourself further.

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        Winston

        As to your contention re: libertarians being “sooks”: I believe it is Marxism that is actually the “ideology of sooks”, and not very bright ones at that.

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        Gee Aye

        Now that I’ve read your post at 33.1 I have chosen to respond to it in the correct location but answer the question you asked elsewhere. My answer is that I agree with everything you wrote but (there is always a but!) I would not have chosen to weaken my argument using a characterisation like “religious zealotry”.

        ie I like this sentence better

        “Or do you honestly contend that it is OK to state that every claim made in this issue is supported by data of equal standing and of equal evidential merit?

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          Winston

          I was suggesting the gamut of evidence from one extreme to the other.

          Because some beliefs within AGW doctrine could be described as “zealotry” does not necessarily make it incorrect, but it certainly would make it more coloured by emotion (rather than reason) and likely to be inherently biased and run contrary to acceptable principles of what should govern what one teaches as fact to impressionable young minds.

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      AndyG55

      “Reality drugs being traded in playgrounds, more bullying, teachers struggling for control of behaviour, cyber-stalking, cyber-porn”

      Says he, being the instigator.

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      Roy Hogue

      Fascinating – so Jo is worried about the teaching of climate change in schools and oh the poor little dears having their minds corrupted.

      Reality drugs being traded in playgrounds, more bullying, teachers struggling for control of behaviour, cyber-stalking, cyber-porn

      Always interesting what the libertarians and extreme right sooks about. Yet another TIRESOME day on the double standards

      And yet another reason to say, BUZZ OFF WITH YOUR CLUMSY PUT-DOWN! :-(

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    steve

    I have read about common core and it looks like a nightmarish distopian implementation of psychological neutering of their youth.

    One of the best antidotes to all this rank eco-propganda ( or any other form of propgaganda ) is encouragement of questioning the status quo and challenging it.

    Our daughter goes to a Christian school, and they too have some eco related rubbish in the curriculum. However, it doesnt seem to be as rabid as you see in state schools. I recall one of the clear objectives of the Communist Party in the USA ( and presumably Australia too via the Fabians ) was to sieze control of schools and education facilities.

    The best gift a parent can give is developing an enquiring mind in a child and telling a child that some people will lie to you to try and do bad things to you. The world is now an ugly place, and we need to be smart. you now wrap your kids in cotton wool at your own risk.

    I think kids need to know that adults do lie, and that sometimes adults tell HUGE lies, but to question things respectfully and challenge things they dont understand, rather than accept stuff thats pushed at them. Challenging needs to become part of their make up and for us to model it.
    Society seems to be modelling brain-dead servile behaviour and umbing down of the common population, which is dangerous. Look at “popular” tv and see how brain dead it truly is e.g. BB – need I say more?

    Lies only propagate through deception and ignorance – train a child to question things, and you have a chance.

    When kids ( and parents ) are bullied and harrassed for daring to question the party line, the party needs to be shoved back into its place.

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      Steve,

      I agree with you about instilling children with an enquiring mind, but I do have a reservation about that.

      Now, while I am directly mentioning the area I have some knowledge in, the overall picture is what I am alluding to here.

      You have school age children being told that Wind Power and Solar Power are good things, and can actually replace traditional sources of power generation , the CO2 emitting coal fired power in the main.

      Teachers who have a University qualification which enables them to teach are the ones who tell the children this. Those teachers specialise in the area of teaching, and have no understanding at the required level of how power is actually generated, so they believe themselves that Wind Power and Solar power are in fact replacements. Now, perhaps those teachers can actually go and find out before teaching their children, but as it is complex, it is mostly beyond their comprehension as well, so they BELIEVE it to be true, so that is what they then teach.

      However, see the point there?

      The teachers CAN actually go and attempt to find out the truth of the matter.

      The children however, cannot, because it is far far beyond their comprehension.

      So, they just HAVE to believe their teacher, the speaking from a position of authority thing which the children will then believe.

      So, without the knowledge, they then go further towards their adult life safe in the knowledge that Wind power and solar power are actually viable replacements. They have no need to ever check for themselves because it is something they have known, as a fact, since way way back in school.

      Now, while here I have used wind power and solar power, the same also applies for all things beyond the comprehension of children, specialised knowledge that the teachers have no comprehension about.

      If children are instilled with incorrect knowledge, then they go through life without actually needing to question it, so when someone tries to explain that their original knowledge was actually incorrect, there is not the willingness to relearn, but almost outright disbelief that what is correctly being explained to them is in fact a pack of lies, because the children, now as adults have known all along without fraction of doubt that what they were originally told IS correct.

      Now that is where we have the trouble we do, if you can see my point here.

      Tony.

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        Tony (another one)

        I find myself agreeing with you, I have a brother who is a Maths Science teacher of some 40 years and he is an ardent CAGW supporter we frequently have energetic discussions on the farce of CAGW but in true entrenched form he refuses to believe anything other then his distorted view. He is very pushy as to his views being the only reality so I pity his students.

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        Steve

        Yes I agree, I always make a point of asking questions about what they are taught to get them to think.

        The awkward bit is where they realize perhaps Mum & Dad might be right, so what does that say about my teacher? Hmmm….

        This is also the pivotal point whereby we also have to teach kids thats its OK to disagree ( repsectfully, even with teachers ) and they come to the realization that not everything they are taught in school is in fact correct. Important point.

        Its a constant skirmish thats fought for their minds, but one we cant affort to back off from, nor be faint about prosecuting.

        It all comes down to kids learning what is *correct* , and if I tick off a few teachers well thats teh cost of doing business.

        Where the nasty bit comes in is where lies are sold as truth into the curriculum and thereby putting parents under pressure to conform. Its quite nasty really.

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    Olaf Koenders

    I spent much of my time teaching my teachers how to spell..

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    can the Skeptics unite and to speak with one voice as official opposition to IPCC

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      Gee Aye

      yes, that will certainly affect the maths and science curriculum in Australia

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      • #
        Winston

        So Gee,

        What specifically in my answer at 33.1 do you take issue with. By all means feel free to be specific, rather than your usual ‘fog of war’ responses.

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          Gee Aye

          At the risk of fogging, I am the one who chooses what I take issue with and to what posts I agree or disagree with and to what I respond.

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            Winston

            Even when it is pertinent and germane to the implication of your sarcastic response to stefan’s comment?

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              Gee Aye

              Surely his comment is in the wrong thread?

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              • #
                Winston

                I think if you acknowledge that Stefan seems to have been referring to opposing the teaching of the IPCC mantra verbatim in schools, then certainly it is in the correct thread. Perhaps you understood a different implication in his comment, which might alter the meaning of your reply, but I took that to suggest that you saw teaching scepticism of the IPCC as inappropriate deviations from “proper” curriculum in maths and science (ie. implying that “skeptics” have a poor grasp of scientific method, and poor maths skills, in spite of evidence increasingly to the contrary from the IPCC and its acolytes).

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                Gee Aye

                I can’t see how anything Stefen wrote above (or ever!) can be interpreted with the clarity you’ve managed. Who bestows officialdom upon some collection of opposition people? Why would sceptics want only one voice? What has opposing the IPCC got to do with curriculum development and delivery?

                Please note that my tone is rhetorical. He posted in the wrong thread.

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    Thumbnail

    Blazing Cat Fur blog has covered the sexual grooming of children at the Toronto District School Board (TDSB)

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    Tony

    This story is some 25 years old. I was brought up by a father and mother who read, my father ead a lot of history and so did I. (I still do). When I eventually went to Uni as an adult student I chose to do a joint major of my central interest theatre and my favourite hobby history. I was lucky in that I had two principal history lecturers who came from opposite sides in the politicisation of history, one was a Marxist and the other a follower of Toynbee and quite conservative. Anyway, at this point my older two children were studying history at secondary school. They both had grown up in a house with a great deal of resources in history and had read many of them. Both were required (consective years) to do an assignment which they both used material from home to complete. The teacher, the same one in both cases but two years apart, failed them both. In each case I requested a conference and pointed out in each case that what he had done was fail them because he had disagreed with the conclusions they had drawn. They had clearly done the work and understood the era (to a high school level) but had looked upon the outcomes from a different slant. In each case he changed the grade. A year later my third child was to go into his supposedley high level history class and he refused to take him because of me. He ended up with a younger more open minded teacher who was prepared to accept different viewpoints if they could be supported by research. We were both happy about this.

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    John Knowles

    Early life personalities are significant, probably more so than the actual curriculum or school type.

    1)Parental role models.
    My mother was supported financially by a husband and she was able to heavily influence four children cos she had time and inner resourcefulness.
    My father often had a Geiger Counter or reactor fuel rod lying around and spoke authoritatively about science matters tho’ he never actually mentioned his work as it was classified. In his spare time I’d find my rather gruff father designing a self-righting trimaran and eventually we had a few summer holidays sailing around the Irish Sea on it. For my 13th birthday I was given a flat-pack kit of marine plywood which I made into a superb kayak during one school holiday.

    2) Inspiring teachers.
    At boarding primary school in Wales I had a rigorous science teacher (ex Manchester Grammar) and a French teacher who was a keen sportsman and took us on Hare & Hound runs on the hillside behind Prestatyn and he incidentally taught me to treat my physical body with the utmost respect.

    3) Siblings.
    My (9yr)elder brother was always doing into-it outdoor stuff and suggested I make a sleeping bag if I couldn’t afford one and I ended up becoming quite proficient as an amateur machinist.

    4) Freedom.
    There were no stupid national laws governing every little aspect of life. If a teacher grabed your ear and twisted it, you probably deserved it. I was encourage to carry a penknife from 8 yrs old and use it responsibly. When I was 18 I kept my air rifle in a home-made case by my bed in 6th form house and tho’ technically not allowed it wasn’t a big deal. In all things I was encouraged to think for myself and take responsibility.

    The people in my life who I looked up to, affected me far more than the education system and I wonder if others have had similar thoughts.

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      John Knowles says here:

      My father often had a Geiger Counter or reactor fuel rod lying around…..

      Scary, eh!. Imagine exposing your family to that.

      But really, is it scary?

      The dirt containing the Uranium is dug out of the ground. As the Uranium already exists in that dirt, it is already at state of enrichment (for want of a better description) of around 0.7%

      150,000 tons of the dirt will yield 200 tons of Uranium. This then goes through 5 processes and you are finally left with enriched ceramicised pellets around three quarters of an inch long and tubular in nature, and around a third of an inch or so across. The original 150,000 tons of dirt will give you around 24 tons of pellets, enough for a typical reactor refuel.

      Those pellets are now enriched to a level typically around 3%, and nuclear weaponised Uranium is typically enriched to a level of 98%.

      Those pellets are then inserted into rods of differing lengths for either PWR (13 feet long) or BWR reactors. (much shorter) The rods are then placed into assemblies containing 180 to 260 rods (PWR) and in the 90′s for BWR. These assemblies are then placed into the reactor during refuels, typically around 15 Months, but with careful use of the rods, even up to 18 Months. A PWR reactor could contain between 120 and 190 rod assemblies, and a BWR reactor around 370 to 800 assemblies. This depends upon the size of the reactor or they type of reactor as PWR and BWR have a number of different variants. A typical Westinghouse PWR reactor will contain 193 assemblies, or 51,000 fuel rods and up to 18 million of those tiny pellets.

      During their period of use the level of enrichment decreases as you might guess. At refuel, existing spent rods are then usually stored inside the Reactor itself, and then after around a year and a half, the next refuel, they can be removed to either a storage facility or for reprocessing.

      Now here’s the punch line for all this.

      When those rods are finally removed from storage inside the reactor, they are typically lower than 0.5% enriched.

      So, spent fuel rods have a lower enrichment level than existing uranium still in the dirt in the ground.

      People have more exposure to radioactivity just living a normal life than they would by being in the same room as a spent nuclear fuel rod.

      Now, last thing here. Look back up this comment and note the size of those tiny pellets.

      Remember how with every new wind or solar power plant you read (a totally incorrect and bogus misrepresentation) that this new renewable power plant will supply the total power requirements for X number of homes for a full year.

      Well then, two can play at that bogus game.

      Just 5 of those tiny pellets can supply all the power needs for a typical residence for a full year.

      That’s about the same length as your middle finger.

      Tony.

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        Andrew McRae

        Tony’s Nuclear Fuel Management And Night Cart Service said:

        So, spent fuel rods have a lower enrichment level than existing uranium still in the dirt in the ground.

        People have more exposure to radioactivity just living a normal life than they would by being in the same room as a spent nuclear fuel rod.

        Thankfully most people reading this will never encounter a spent fuel rod assembly, nor do they have one “just lying around” home, so they will never have the chance to make the mistake of believing Tony’s misinformation about spent fuel rods.

        Read what an actual nuclear power plant operator in Finland has to say about spent fuel rods.

        The truth is that the U-235 resulting from enrichment is NOT the main radioactive element in spent fuel, which is why the enrichment percentage is not an adequate indicator of radioactivity. In fact U-235 is only weakly radioactive having a half-life of 700 million years. The randomly transmuted byproducts of the reactor’s neutron rich environment are what make spent fuel rods highly radioactive.
        It then takes several years for radiation to decay to levels where they can even risk moving it from the reactor hall to an ‘interim’ spent fuel storage pond. Well that sounds very much like a pool you would not want to go swimming in.
        Then the spent fuel rods will stay in the spent fuel pool for up to 40 years before the radiation is low enough to risk removing it from cooling water and putting it in dry cask storage or long term repositories.

        But maybe you don’t believe the nuclear power plant operator. Maybe all that radiation has sent them crazy. Let’s check in with the USA Nuclear Regulatory Commission:

        Spent fuel continues to generate heat because of radioactive decay of the elements inside the fuel. After the fission reaction is stopped and the reactor is shut down, the products left over from the fuel’s time in the reactor are still radioactive and emit heat as they decay into more stable elements.

        Hopefully you’ve been convinced that spent fuel rods are indeed highly radioactive and remain significantly radioactive for 40 years after being taken out of the reactor.

        Do you really think John Knowles saw a spent fuel rod at his home when he was under 18 years old? It must have been in a toy reactor core for a few hours at most if it was ever in one at all.
        At this point you may take note of the fact that John Knowles never described the fuel rod from his half-remembered anecdote as a “spent” fuel rod, he just called it a “reactor fuel rod”. Indeed if it had been a spent fuel rod from a commercial reactor he would have received radiation poisoning by… just being in the same room as the rod.

        Don’t go swimming in the pool that glows blue, kiddies, it’s bad for you.

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          Yikes! Talk about getting it wr wr wr (as Fonzie might say)

          Thanks Andrew.

          Looks like more work for this little black duck!

          So then, what advantages are there in reprocessing the spent rods, and how soon could they start that process, after the refuel?

          I was reading an article recently that the latest reactor designs will enable spent rods to be stored inside the reactor containment structure (safely) for the life of the plant.

          Tony.

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            Andrew McRae

            That was just the kid gloves. You should have seen the comment before I halved it in size and cut out some snark from it! (yes really)

            Dunno about the reprocessing, I assumed that was filtering out waste actinides and doing more enrichment.

            Yeah you’re probably thinking of the Travelling Wave Reactor, interesting stuff and Bill Gates was getting behind it at one stage. He wants to sell self-contained reactors to cities and leave the reactor in-situ in the ground when its fuel load is used up. It’s quite possibly the most irresponsible approach to nuclear waste management I’ve ever heard. Burying it under bedrock is a safe bet. Burying it under 30 metres of earth… eh, mediocre at best.

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        John Knowles

        My father held the Patent on the AGR fuel rods and they gave him a weld-rejected one which he took along to nuclear PR talks. Nothing he brought home had ever been near a reactor.

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    pat

    Retired now -

    am afraid the left/right paradigm is hard for many people to shake off. reading the comments, i’m led to believe that
    -rightwing people don’t think becoming a teacher is worthwhile!
    - Conservative govts have & will always be too scared to stand up to the Left? LOL.

    the real powers that be have good reason to believe the public is still nicely divided & easy to manipulate/control.

    meanwhile, the financial terrorists, as Max Keiser calls them, know how to unite for a good cause! what a team, & what deception in almost every line:

    11 Oct: Bloomberg: Edward Robinson: Climate Change Rescue in U.S. Makes Steyer Converge With Paulson
    Billionaire Tom Steyer recalls a dinner at the U.S. Treasury in Washington with two senior department officials and six money managers. It was August 2012, and the meal was part of an effort by the agency to keep up with what the financial community was worrying about. The diners discussed China’s slowdown, Federal Reserve policy and other trends affecting the U.S. economy.
    Steyer says they were overlooking the biggest game changer of all. He told the group the country would have to overhaul its energy policy to address greenhouse gas emissions, Bloomberg Markets magazine will report in its November issue. His fellow guests were skeptical.
    “It’s like I was saying that what’s going to make a difference in the economy is unicorns,” says Steyer, 56, the founder of Farallon Capital Management LLC, a San Francisco hedge-fund firm with about $20 billion in assets. He declines to name the other people present because the meeting was off the record but says they control a lot of money. “I thought to myself: These guys need to be made aware of the risks here.”
    PAT – LOL. THESE ANONYMOUS MONEY BOYS HAD NOT WORRIED ABOUT (FINANCIALLY EXPLOITING) CAGW PRIOR TO AUGUST 2012!!!!

    So in December, Steyer ended his 26-year career as a hedge-fund manager and set out to make an economic case for addressing climate change. He wasn’t the only person from the financial world to have this idea: Henry Paulson, Treasury secretary from 2006 to 2009 and a longtime conservationist (PAT – HAHAHAHAHA!), and Michael Bloomberg, the outgoing mayor of New York, which had suffered the costliest hurricane damage in its history, were also plotting how to reframe the issue.
    The three men agreed to join forces to persuade investors, policy makers and the public that the consequences of unchecked carbon emissions would eventually blow away whatever short-term costs are involved in curbing the pollution.

    ***They’re funding and co-chairing a study to calculate just how much economic risk American industries and communities face as a warming atmosphere generates more storms, droughts, floods and extreme heat. Robert Rubin, who served as Treasury secretary from 1995 to 1999, and former Secretary of State George Shultz have signed on as advisers.
    “Climate change is every bit as big a risk to our economy as it is to the environment,” says Paulson, 67, who was chairman and chief executive officer of Goldman Sachs (GS) Group Inc. before he went to Washington…
    The economic study they’re funding, which they’ve dubbed Risky Business, will be published in late 2014. They say it’s just one piece of a larger strategy to reboot the issue as a global priority…
    Nicholas Stern, chair of the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment at the London School of Economics and Political Science, counters that making a fiscal case for regulating carbon may be the best way to break through the resistance on the issue…(HAHAHAHAHA)
    Paulson and Steyer each consulted Stern separately last spring as they formulated their thinking on the issue…
    (LOL)Paulson and Steyer make an odd couple…
    They have two things in common. One is Goldman Sachs. Steyer began his career at the investment bank in the early 1980s on the risk arbitrage desk run by Rubin, who went on to become the firm’s co-chairman, from 1990 to 1992. The other is a conviction that Americans will get serious about climate change if they understand how much it’s going to cost…
    PAT – WHICH COST: THE COST OF FINANCIALISING CO2 OR THE COST OF NOT FINANCIALISING CO2, BLOOMBERG?

    Along with Steyer and Bloomberg, Paulson is betting that as climate change, once a distant possibility, becomes altogether real, our economic self-interest will be the thing that finally provokes a popular call for action. That will almost certainly have to be making carbon dioxide emissions expensive by either taxing or regulating the gas on a global basis, Steyer says.
    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-10-01/climate-change-rescue-in-u-s-makes-steyer-converge-with-paulson.html

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    handjive

    a few links:

    Aussie prof lays out plan to brainwash kids on climate
    Biochemist Gideon Polya writes in “100 Ideas for Climate Activists”
    Aussie prof Gideon Polya lays out plan to brainwash kids on climate: “Children must be ethically encouraged to boycott ecocidal and terracidal products and services”

    Resources:
    National Geographic -A guide to teaching climate change years 3-8
    NOAA urges teachers to terrorize kids on climate: ‘Make an extinction polyhedron’ because climate changes causes ‘mass extinction events’
    Climate Lessons (UK): A blog sharing information about materials presented to children on climate
    Rolling your eyes at climate change education, with many links. Quote: “When asked about climate change, one group responded “Climate change? That again?” with a roll of the eyes.
    “We’ve been learning about climate change as long as I can remember.”

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    Reinder van Til

    There is only one way to stop the fascist marxist revival and that is to form private schools with private money. It takes lectures by people like Joanne and others in local meetings to convince the unaware locals of the evil agenda 21.

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    • #
      Gee Aye

      that will be a crucial step to convince the government of the need for change in the maths and science curriculum in Australia

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    scaper...

    A bit OT. I see that David, Jo and this place got a plug on 2GB today.

    Also, some other good news. Qld now has no Green representation in the Federal Senate. A little celebration will be had in this household tonight.

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      scaper...

      Correction. No Green voted to the Senate from Qld this time. Will have to wait another three years for Qld to be Federal Greens, representative free but still will be celebrating!

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    From my facebook page:

    Jeremy Das says:…I recently saw two Youtube videos featuring kids who had been picked on by kids / inappropriately treated by a teacher for being unbelievers: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AmFP2pqkfyA and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RgyzHDpt6p4

    Environmental propaganda in Indiana’s classrooms
    “My name is Steve Mroczkiewicz. I have 6 kids, 5 of which are still in the Attica, IN school corporation system. Ive been concerned about how AGWT has been p…

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      Rereke Whakaaro

      The really sad thing is, that when kids are indoctrinated at school, about ages 10 or 11, they never loose that programming.

      Even it they see the other side of the debate, they will reject it. Even if they see mountains of evidence that goes against what they were originally indoctrinated with, they will say, “Well, yes, I understand all of those points, and I cannot dispute any of them, and I cannot fault the overall argument they put forward, but I still need to believe what I was originally told when I was 10 or 11.

      In my view, brainwashing children, for any reason, good or bad, is a crime against humanity, and should be treated as such.

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        Rereke Whakaaro

        I should add that people who are “forced” to change their programming, by counter programming, or pure weight of evidence, often end up having a nervous breakdown.

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      Reinder van Til

      That is why Hitler aimed at the youth as well

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        Gee Aye

        you said the magic word. It took a long time though

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        • #
          Reinder van Til

          The AGW hoax is nothing more than a prologue or prelude to the even more sinister and evil agenda 21. The evil powers that be are trying to impose marxism on us step by step. The enterprise started more than 40 years ago with the club of Rome. The take over of schools is crucial to this. The only way to tackle this is making people aware of the dangers coming from the UN, leave the public schools and form private schools funded by local communities. In other words: take your roots back and then they are powerless.

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    Dave

    .

    I started looking for all different school curriculums? (or curricula) that involve climate change or sustainability sections and I can’t believe the number of websites associated with schooling and education in Australia that came up.

    1. http://www.nap.edu.au/ National Assessment Program (NAP).
    2. http://www.australiancurriculum.edu.au/ Australian Curriculum Website.
    3. http://scseec.edu.au/ Standing Council on School Education and Early Childhood.
    4. http://www.myschool.edu.au/ My School website.
    5. http://www.acara.edu.au/ Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA)
    6. http://www.schoolsurvey.edu.au/ School Survey Website.
    7. http://www.acer.edu.au/ Australian Council for Education Research
    8. http://www.youtube.com/user/ACARAeduau You Tube Channel for ACARA.
    9. http://deewr.gov.au/ Department of Education | Department of Employment.
    10. http://www.betterschools.gov.au/ Better Schools Website.
    11. http://www.youtube.com/user/BetterSchoolsAU Better Schools You Tube page.
    12. http://www.federalfinancialrelations.gov.au/content/npa/education.aspx National Partnerships – Education funding details
    13. http://www.ais.wa.edu.au/ Association of Independent Schools WA
    14. http://www.ais.sa.edu.au/ The Association of Independent Schools of South Australia
    ……
    …..
    ….

    Then I gave up, there are literally hundreds more, each state, each school, apprenticeships, universities, colleges, TAFE, each government education department, Rate My Teachers website, and on and on and on.

    How the stuff do we find out what is being taught, by whom and with what qualifications. I think the whole education system is a bureaucratic nightmare.

    And here’s the Climate Change Education Website – http://climatechange.edu.au/about-us/

    Why is there so many federal departments when I thought education was primarily a State responsibility. Probably more pen pushers in all the departments than actual teachers etc.

    Also interesting stuff on Education in Australia.

    It seems Australia shares 1st place with New Zealand, Finland, Denmark and Cuba according to the 2007 UN Education Index.

    But with this lot of garbage above, it’s amazing we got to this placing.

    ————-
    Thank you Dave! — Yes, it is a big industry. That’s helpful. Cheers. Jo

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    Andrew McRae

    Aghh, while I was preparing this draft comment during the last hour a new blog article has been posted so nobody will ever read this comment now. I’ll post it anyway since I did promise 6 moons ago that if the topic of education arose I would post some old school materials.

    – - – - – - -

    I can only comment as a former student of Qld curriculum between 1988-1995. The rapidity with which IPCC dogma was distributed to schools worldwide was, in hindsight, quite astonishing. I still have my handouts and notes of Grade 9 and 10 in an old lever-arch folder in a storage box. The textbooks are probably still in a box at my parents’ place (and I can retrieve them for propaganda analysis if anyone’s interested).

    Consider that the IPCC’s first report was published in 1990.
    Within two years my Grade 9 Geography class was being indoctrinated with global warming alarmism. At least I presume we were given oral explanations and shown videos to that effect because that’s the only way the answers I gave to essay questions could have gotten into my head. There isn’t any alarmism in the teacher’s photocopied handouts that I have, only in my answers to questions. Take this doozy, which I’ll transcribe to spare you from seeing the handwriting of the person I shall refer to as “Andrew the Younger”. All mistakes in spelling, grammar, logic, and fact which follow are those of the original author. :)

    The Greenhouse effect is commonly known as Global Warming. The direct effect of Global Warming is the increased average temperature of the Earth’s surface. The Earth is naturally surrounded by layers of greenhouse gases, such as carbon dioxide.
    The sun’s heat penetrates this layer but, after being reflected off the Earth, cannot escape through the layer to space. This heating effect keeps life on Earth alive and prevents temperature extremes such as those on the Moon. With advent of heavy industry, since the Industrial revolution, increased (methane and carbon dioxide) greenhouse gas emissions have acceleration the Global Warming. This will have far reaching effects such as floods, droughts, famine, disease, increased food prices, rising sea levels, heatwaves, poor crops and the submergence of many low-lying coastal regions and Pacific Islands.

    So you can see where Tim Flannery got all his predictions, he was just reading from Grade 9 school curriculum. :)
    But seriously, how’s the alarmism?

    Probably within a week (judging by adjacency in the folder) we were also asked to write a short essay on the following question:

    “Over history, man has had an increasingly large impact on the environment.” To what extent do you agree? What future can you envisage for the environment? Support with specific examples.

    I won’t transcribe the whole essay response that followed because you can easily imagine it. It’s a summary of environmental concerns such as pollution, oil spills, ozone depletion, habitat destruction, erosion, global warming, overpopulation, and loss of soil fertility.
    What’s kind of funny is this one sentence:

    Increased greenhouse emissions…speed up the Greenhouse Effect, so warming the planet possibly by 3°C in 100 years.

    Yes the crossed out section is crossed out heavily on the page. I’d like to think Andrew The Younger was instinctively skeptical of such accurate climate predictions being made over such a long time frame, even at the tender age of 15, but I really don’t know why he crossed it out.

    The future that the essay’s author envisaged at that time was:

    skin cancer epidemics, a global rise in temperature, rising sea levels, the extinction of hundreds of species, mass famine, and the use of renewable energy such as solar and wind and wave power necessitated by dwindling fossil fuel reserves.

    Well hey, I guess you could say he was half right as half of those things continued to happen, but they were qualitative not quantitative so there is plenty of wriggle room for interpretation. It also doesn’t allow for the possibility that these things may have naturally happened anyway. As for fossil fuels dwindling, again it is an imprecise term as it doesn’t distinguish between known economically extractable resources versus the physical reality. The “necessity” of solar, wind, and wave(!!) power remains true if you extend it far enough into the future when all known material sources of energy will have been depleted, say 1200 years, but it disregards the possibility of discovering new kinds of energy sources.

    The main educational message here is that we were inculcated with vague doom but were not given a more sophisticated quantitative understanding of the time scales, costs, and benefits involved. For Grade 9 maybe that’s passable. But we were not given any appreciation for other qualitative influences such as scarcity driving high prices stimulating adaptation and R&D into technical substitutes. They gave us only the scary half of the story.

    Where would Andrew The Younger have gotten all these doom and gloom ideas, if not from the school and the media?

    But I’ll be fair to the architects of the Qld curriculum. We were given a handout explaining the main climatic changes that occurred over the last 15000 years and the effect this had on civilisations. Here are two consecutive rows in that table:

    Date: 800 A.D.
    Environmental Changes: Eight degree [Fahrenheit? -ed] rise in global average temperature. Pack ice in the Atlantic melts.

    Date: 982 A.D.
    Human Activity: Eric The Red moves to Greenland from Scandinavia. Colonization of Greenland begins.

    It’s consistent with the IPCC 1990 report; they weren’t hiding the Medieval Warm Period back then!

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      Andrew McRae

      As I can see a certain induhvidual has appointed themselves the Topicality Police today, a pre-emptive strike on accusations of being off-topic are warranted. The topic of this article is [my bold]:
      “I’m considering the new National Australian Curriculum, but comments related to the old curriculum and non-Australian curriculums are useful too.”

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      Andrew,

      this is very interesting, and for one very significant point.

      All of the above during ‘Andrew the Younger’s’ days at school was during the time Labor, under Wayne Goss took political control here in Queensland, and we all remember who his Chief of Staff was, a man later promoted to Director-General of the Office of Cabinet, arguably Queensland’s most powerful bureaucrat.

      Tony.

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        Andrew McRae

        For the old and the wizened, accessing the identity of Goss’ Chief of Staff is as easy as recalling “The Days of Our Lives”, but we of “The Young and The Restless” have to go and look it up. :)

        Oh my god, I was programmed to be a Ruddbot.

        When is Rudd going to have a National Sorry Day to apologise to the Misinformed Generations?

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      Rod Stuart

      You remind me of a story, Andrew. I hope it isn’t too boring.
      I first went to school in 1952, in Manitoba. The two story schoolhouse had grades 1 through 8 downstairs and 9 through 12 upstairs, with one teacher on each level.
      In 1956 I went to school one morning and the teacher was beside herself. The USSR had just put Sputnik in orbit, and she went to great pains to describe how the Russians would surely be able to aim a “death ray” up to Sputnik and have it reflect back on us. She even drew diagrams on the blackboard. We absorbed it all, but I can’t actually remember being scared. The teacher, Lizzy Stevenson, was absolutely shitless, to the point of quivering.
      Well, in those days, there was a school board. My pop was the chairman of the school board. We had party lines with about 14 families on a line. When the kids came home from school with answers to “and what did you learn today”, the phone line ran hot. Pop called an emergency meeting of the school board that very evening, after which they all went to the teacherage. We never heard about the “death star” again. Although the the school building and the funding was a Provincial Government responsibility, governance of the curriculum and the way it was addressed was a local issue, hammered out in school board meeting to which nearly all parents attended.
      You have me going now. I remember I was about ten, and Lizzy was a real nature addict. She taught us a lot about trees, flowers, animals, you name it. One day she was on to the topic of gophers, and stated that in our district all of the gophers were Richardson’s Ground squirrels. I argued with her that we had a pasture with a few Flickertails in it. She resoundingly said I was mistaken.
      So next morning at sunup,I grabbed my trustuy Mossberg 22 and went out to the pasture. When Lizzy came to school the next morning there was a Flickertail on her desk with a hole through his head. She had a good look at it and said “Well Buggar me!”

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        Rod Stuart,

        Judas Priest, that last bit there will get you life in prison these days!

        Tony.

        PostScript: What you did, and not what she said! Hmm! Second thoughts, maybe both of them!

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        Andrew McRae

        Good on yer, Rod. A vivid example of “show and tell” educational for all involved. :)

        As for the school curriculum being locally influenced, I’d be concerned that the knowledge of experts could be shut out by groupthink with that approach. Equally you give a good illustration of how baseless “what-if” scare stories by one teacher can be re-normalised, at least for the sake of not scaring children unnecessarily.

        Which leads me to ask, why did our school curriculum authors believe it was necessary to scare kids with global warming doom in 1992? Either
        A) they believed the IPCC to be infallible in their assessment of the problem, OR
        B) they wanted kids to adopt the actions offered as solutions regardless of the reality of the problem.

        All speculation, of course.

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          Rod Stuart

          I wasn’t specific enough. It was along time ago. The Manitoba Department of Education laid our a curriculum in guideline form as I recall. The school board, i.e. the parents, had a lot of input into the emphasis on subjects, which of course were mostly reading, writing and arithmetic in the lower grades. I point out that, being a farming community, the emphasis on seeds, trees, plants, animals, birds etc. was most definitely different that in schools in Winnipeg, for instance. I also recall that a school inspector would visit about once every three months to spend a day or two.
          I should also add that about 1960 those smaller schools became amalgamated into larger “consolidated” collegiates. The parents were still involved to a lesser extent.
          I believe the discipline was a lot more strict than today. To be sent to the principal’s office meant that by the time you got home the principal would have called on that cursed party line. That was worse than anything else he could do.
          I recall Bill Spencer was caught smoking on the school ground, and he was expelled for two weeks. His mother Fran had him fork manure from one side of the barn to the other and back again for that entire fortnight. He was so glad to get back to school he was a model student from then on!
          In Grade Ten we gave our French teacher a hard time one day and she resigned! The whole class went and begged her to come back. No French teacher, no French. No French, no senior matriculation. No senior matric, no university entrance. Simple.
          Before he got caught smoking, Spencer back-talked a new teacher named Raul, and threatened to hit him. Raul calmly invited him to come down to the gym and put the gloves on. Little did Spencer realise, but Raul had several boxing trophies. Poor Bill had some massive body bruises when he went home that night, frightened that his mother would see them. If she had known he would have taken a worse licking at home.

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      Andrew, golly, thanks for digging that out. I had no idea things were so propaganda-advanced in what 1992? That is amazing – how fast the ed system can move when they are motivated. It really has been an “upbringing” for a whole generation hasn’t it? Thank you. That is a very useful example. Teachers today were raised on this…

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    Narelle Eggins

    The problem is not just in science classes.

    The bias of the QLD Geography syllabus came to my attention when the teachers were trying to sell their Gr 11 & 12 courses to the yr 10s. I was the guidance officer.

    I investigated: The new senior Geography syllabus in 2008(has changed now I think)had 1 module on Climate Science which was so biased. It assuming the AGW hypothesis was true such that it would have been impossible to pass the course if you did not have this belief as a basis for your response to assignments.

    I sent the syllabus to Chris Monckton who agreed with me and suggest a court challenge, but money was an issue. I think I still have his analysis of the syllabus.

    Problem was the Geography teachers all seemed brainwashed. They are not scientists and did not seem to question. Their Association website was full of AGW stuff including promotion of one of Flannery’s books dealing with now to integrate AGW into all subjects in school.

    I also looked at the agenda at a Geography teachers conference. All papers that were on climate issue assumed the IPCC position. No questioning at all.

    I wrote several times to the people who wrote the curriculum in the Qld Studies Authority and presented lots of material, but only got a polite response. No interest

    I put in a submission to the Senate inquiry on bias in education (can’t remember full name), complaining about the syllabus, but the issues was passed over and the eventual report said no bias in syllabuses had been reported. I wrote to Senator Mason who convened it, complaining, but got no response.

    I lost. Couldn’t see where else to go with it. Good luck!

    Narelle

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      NArelle, it would be good if you could find that letter from Christopher, or the one you sent to him. That does sound interesting, even if it has technically changed, the old curriculums are what trained the teachers, in a sense…

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      steve

      Narelle, my 2 bits here – as I’ve commented a few times its really a fight for who makes up whats in your childs mind really – you or the State.

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        Rod Stuart

        Precisely the thing that is so sinister about our resident troll Michael, who claims to be a teacher.

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    Sonny

    It’s sonny here,

    I once read some of the curriculum surrounding global warming.
    I think it’s marvellous! We need the replacement generation to have a much more skeptical outlook than our current one. Can you imagine the conversation?

    “Remember all those scary bullshit stories they told us about dirty fossil fuels and how it was fryin the earth?”

    “Yep”

    “I guess that was all a load of bullshit government propoganda”

    “Yep”

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    Borat of Cultural Learnings of Australiastan

    My country send me to Australiastan to make movie-film about climate change so children believe. Please, come and see my film. If it not success, I will be execute…By Education Department of Australia.

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    steve

    I think one of the more tricky ( but not impossible ) matters to tackle is when mum and dad tells the child flat out that that the particular thing ( CAGW ) they have been taught at school is the unadulterated truth, in fact – isnt.

    The evil genius of the CAGW crowd that pushes this farcical propaganda is that they know full well that a lot of parents just assume ( WRONGLY!!) that what is taught at school is 100% OK.

    I have no issue with having a full blown stand up argument with the teacher if they object to a balanced or opposing view of contentious things. More people IMHO need to confront teachers to tell them they are flat out wrong – otherwise you effectively sign over all your parental rights to someone else. Is that what you want?

    Where the powers that be have been effective is teaching gullible people that opposition isnt allowed. The problem with this is people fail to develop backbones and go crying to the powers that be, that TPTB then attempt to crush dissent through any means necessary. Such is the lie of CAGW that they try to silence all dissent.

    SOme of this below might look familiar:

    Congressional Record–Appendix, pp. A34-A35
    January 10, 1963

    Current Communist Goals

    EXTENSION OF REMARKS OF HON. A. S. HERLONG, JR. OF FLORIDA

    IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

    Thursday, January 10, 1963

    17. Get control of the schools. Use them as transmission belts for socialism and current Communist propaganda. Soften the curriculum. Get control of teachers’ associations. Put the party line in textbooks.

    38. Transfer some of the powers of arrest from the police to social agencies. Treat all behavioral problems as psychiatric disorders which no one but psychiatrists can understand [or treat].

    39. Dominate the psychiatric profession and use mental health laws as a means of gaining coercive control over those who oppose Communist goals.

    40. Discredit the family as an institution

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    Dave

    This is also a mystery.

    Here is the Australian Institute of Physics website. It seems all above board and does have good sections for teaching aids etc.

    But when you get to the local branches here, the Victorian Branch of AIP, then the CAGW starts, and almost dominates some of the pages.

    Quote here:

    Science teachers have the knowledge base to understand climate change and the communication skills to explain it. We can be an important factor in increasing the community’s understanding of this most crucial issue.
    The AIP (Vic Branch) Education Committee has established an initiative “Science Teachers for Climate Awareness” (SciTCA). The purpose of which is to raise the awareness of the voting public, starting with your teaching colleagues at your school, and then the parent body, and other community groups.

    Plus a full page of links to CAGW papers and seminars by alarmists. I thought physics was an exact science that didn’t allow for propaganda.

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    Reinder van Til

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AmLT5WGMJj8

    [Please do not just put up a link without an explanation (in your own words) of what it is about. No one likes chasing links. Mod oggi]

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      Gee Aye

      oh dear!

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      Eddie Sharpe

      Yeah wtf. A few words of introduction are only good manners. Don’t they teach that anymore ?
      I guess its more about self expression now, so get expressing at least, in your own words Reinder.

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      Andrew McRae

      Oh I can’t stand nationalism either, though for short periods it can be useful for particular purposes.
      I would simply point out the potential contradiction in the globalist rhetoric.
      If there really are options and values that are good for everybody and which by reason we ought to all hold in common, then you won’t ever find an issue in which the interests of the nation are in conflict with the interest of the World. If a course of action is good for the majority but bad for a minority then that is not an argument for imposing globalism any more than one can accept slavery. Globalism in effect co-opts the forces of the State and uses them against the people the State used to represent. That’s globalism’s only purpose because anything the people would have actually wanted would have been administered by their own nation state anyway.

      At every level of organisational abstraction and consensus-building you have the same problem, how to produce the best net benefit without creating dangerous enemies amongst the dissenters and uncommitted.
      Getting out of the way and letting the members manage their own affairs in voluntary transactions is still the best solution because you aren’t giving unnecessary power to megalomaniacs like the globalists.
      Understanding the need to get along and take account of the consequences of one’s actions is wise at all times, regardless of what banner you fly over it. The UN functioning only as a forum would be a good idea.

      Jingoistic or isolationist, you don’t have to be in favour of nationalism to see globalism is a bad idea.

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      Reinder van Til

      My apologies. No problem next time

      –Thanks :- ) Jo

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    John Knowles

    No wonder Au has poor science understanding. While helping my 16 year old decide what subjects to do for his High School Cert a teacher told me that students couldn’t study Physics, Chemistry and Biology because they might get “burnt out” on sciences. The poor little darlings !

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      Eddie Sharpe

      Yes, and what might happen to their core socio-empathic development if they were allowed to master all the (real) sciences ?

      While Geography was fun, when I was at Uni. everyone wondered what a Geography graduate could do. Well I guess we only thought Buck Rogers could save the planet.

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        John Knowles

        I reckon in the internet/mobile phone/social media age it’s hard to remain an introverted science geek.
        Sebastian K did reasonably well in Chemistry at a Sydney Uni but really lives life outside of his power station job and one of his role-models was cousin Harry who plays guitar, sings , rock-climbs and somehow scored a 1st class Hons Chemistry from Oxford.
        There’s plenty of time outside a formal education to become a socially fluid human being so there’s no need for the education system to worry about students being overly trained in only one field.

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    gai

    You might want to look at Robin’s site on the UN push for control of Education (Common Core)
    http://www.invisibleserfscollar.com/category/common-core/

    Robin, a lawyer in the USA has been digging into the deliberate killing of our education system.

    My name is Robin Eubanks and I am an attorney…

    I started off in Big Law doing corporate work and then helped start a legal department for a small healthcare company that grew to be a New York stock-exchange traded company. Healthcare turned into an excellent background for my current work in education as government regulation and special privileges drive the everyday dynamics of what raises money and creates costs. A background in Law is also excellent preparation for determining precisely what the terms commonly used actually mean Especially in an industry that is consciously using language to hide the actual intended goals. My experience allowed me to recognize that education in the US and globally has been, for decades, engaged in a massive Newspeak (as in George Orwell’s 1984) campaign that creates a public illusion on what is being promised and what is coming to the schools and classrooms that are this country’s future. I know what the words and terms really mean to an Ed insider and how it differs from the common public perception. I have documented what was really behind the reading wars and math wars. I have pulled together what the real intended Common Core implementation looks like. And it is wildly different from the PR sales job used to gain adoption in most of the states.

    For me the English language is both a sword and a shield. I have documented what is really going on, written a book describing how and why education became a weapon, and now we are going to talk about what the real Common Core implementation looks like in various communities in the US in this busy Summer of 2012.

    Because this time I have treated the American taxpayer as if each of you were the client and gathered everything we need to know going forward. If you want to think of Common Core through the image of the Titanic hitting that iceberg, this blog’s purpose this summer is to slow us down so we can negotiate the icefield in the daylight with accurate information and make it home safely. I do not want to be left describing why we sunk. If we can avoid the iceberg the book can then get us safely to the kind of schools we really need and the 21st century economy that will allow as many of us as possible to prosper just as far as hard work and imagination will take us…. http://www.invisibleserfscollar.com/about-me.html

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    Ken Stewart

    Sorry Jo and folks, I’ve been busy with visitors and helping at the local heritage village for the last few days so I haven’t kept up.

    Having been out of the system for a few years I cant comment on the current Curriculum, but in Queensland primary schools until the mid- 2000s the science syllabus was written in the early 1980s, so didn’t mention AGW. The problem was (and is) that it was taught and interpreted and expanded on and embellished and “integrated” with other subjects by teachers with little scientific training or understanding. The problem is with the teaching, not curriculum, though that may have changed now with very prescriptive demands in the system nowadays. Teachers teach kids, and their biases and world knowledge picked up from popular media is passed on as well. Once when I was a relieving teacher (after I retired) I saw a teacher showing a class how much sea levels would rise in the next 100 years when the Antarctic ice melted. I suggested to him to find out what the Antarctic temperature in summer was, how much it was likely to rise, what is the temperature at which ice melts, and how long it would take to melt an ice sheet. Blank look. Luckily as kids get older they get more skeptical.

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      Ken, that’s very much corroborated with other teachers and parents comments. Though I do think the new curriculum has some serious flaws as well.
      There are still good teachers out there, but there are many who’ve never been taught well themselves, and a mountain of resources which help uninformed teachers teach one-sided and deceptive half-truths.
      High School teachers tell me that the problem is very much started in primary school, and the kids come fully loaded. It is only in senior school, one commented, that that things could be set straight.

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    John Brookes

    From my school days, I don’t recall much indoctrination. Except in year 5 a teacher mentioned the pom sent out to Australia in the great depression (Niemeyer?)- to ensure that we didn’t default on our debts. He spoke of him with disdain and a touch of anger. I took that to heart, and have had no reason to change that opinion over the years.

    But the modern physics curriculum is overcrowded. There is too much material covered in not enough depth. And there is nothing about global warming in the physics curriculum. The maths curriculum is in a worse state. It jumps from topic to topic rather than building up gradually.

    Interestingly enough, when looking at todays university students, the main thing I notice is that they are very well behaved. Much better than we were 35 years ago. And a genuine pleasure to have around.

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    From My facebook page
    Phil Slade:

    This is my kids old primary school , they have Australias most “sustainable” curriculum . A few years back they went full steam ahead with a federally funded program called “The Stephanie Alexander kitchen garden” they replaced every single plant on their grounds with something edible and had the garden organically certified , they modified a classroom to be an industrial kitchen…all beer and skittles you might think ! Well besides the fact they charge every student $40 per term to support the scheme they use it as a political sideshow , the school is in the electorate of Brand held by Gary Gray , Gary uses the school to host many luncheons for various dignitaries and has been visited by Julia Gillard , Nicola Roxon ect…. They make a fortune selling their organically certified produce and the funds from these sales always seem to end up in the bank ( I used to be on the school council so I could see the funds accumulating ) The school has strong policy surrounding Christmas , easter or any religious event and allow Labor to set up stalls at school functions fetes and carnivals….please see the above link which contains many photos to support my claims
    Bertram Primary School

    Peter Martin

    Peter Martin wrote about posts on the UK system in Harmless Sky (which attracted a lot of comments)
    Peter Martin Here’s the first: http://ccgi.newbery1.plus.com/blog/?p=340
    And a follow up: http://ccgi.newbery1.plus.com/blog/?p=446
    We are talking a few years back. Maybe things have improved.

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    laura

    Wow, I too am disgusted that they consider Indigenous issues to be worthy of being taught in EVERY subject. Disgusting.

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    Karl W. Braun

    Incorporating climate change into the school curriculum can lead to unintended consequences:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bvfr1rOfiu4

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    I have written several essays and a book to balance the fear mongering of some climate alarmists. It offers fascinating nature stories, solid biology and solid climate science. It promotes wise environmental stewardship but is also a muckraking book contrasting good conservation science with bad science that has been defiled by politics and climate alarmism. It will tests your critical thinking skills, which is what real science is about. http://landscapesandcycles.net
    Free essays
    1. Fabricating Climate Doom: Hijacking Conservation Success in the UK to Build Consensus!
    http://landscapesandcycles.net/hijacking-conservation-success-in-the-uk.html
    2. Fabricating Climate Doom – Part 3: Extreme Weather Extinctions Enron Style
    http://landscapesandcycles.net/fabricating-climate-doom—part-3–extreme-weather.html
    3. Contrasting Good and Bad Science: Disease, Climate Change and the Case of the Golden Toad
    http://landscapesandcycles.net/contrasting-good-and-bad-science–disease–climate.html

    The whole book from which these essays are adapted serves as a superb environmental studies text book for any secondary program. Read the reviews for Landscapes & Cycles: An Environmentalist’s Journey to Climate Skepticism at Amazon


    Jim, I love the essay on the blue butterfly. Fascinating story I have not heard before. You write well, and I will send you an email. Thanks! – Jo

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