JAMIE McIntyre says he supports the Gonski education reforms, but only if there’s an overhaul of the “entire state-based education system and curriculum”.
“I’m fed up, like many parents and teachers, with the poor quality of education dished out at school and the fact they’ll pour billions more into it and it will still be deeply flawed unless a major shake-up occurs,” the independent candidate for New England said yesterday.
The author of the book, What I Didn’t Learn At School But Wish I Had and chief executive officer of 21st Century Education, said one of the major aims of his 21st Century Australia Party, which missed out on being registered in time for the election, was a complete shakeup of education.
He said topics such as financial and business education needed to be included as well as subjects aimed at developing emotional intelligence, along with technology, social and relationship skills.
“Gonski may not even improve it one bit if the entire curriculum isn’t changed and a real life education is added immediately to the education system,” Mr McIntyre said.
“Most parents and students would agree a large majority of things taught at school are not only mind numbingly boring, but entirely irrelevant and useless.
“Other than the three Rs - reading, writing and arithmetic - which they are even failing to teach effectively, the rest of what is being taught is of limited value. And surely it doesn’t take twelve years to teach the three Rs.”
Mr McIntyre said the current education system was also unfair on teachers.
“I feel sorry for teachers having to teach such a poor curriculum that largely bores students, and no doubt teachers themselves, as well as having to work in such a poor education system,” he said.
“After attending teachers’ forums in both Tamworth and Armidale I take my hat off to teachers for what they have to deal with.”
Those who didn’t make the grade though, would be in his sights.
“We should not reward failure only success. Top performing teachers should be paid performance bonuses and poor performing ones fired,” Mr McIntyre said.
“The entire recruitment and training process of teachers needs changing, and part-time teachers from the private sector with real-life experience needs adding to the education system.
“Theory no longer cuts it in a world that’s become increasingly competitive and Australians are being left behind.”