The most obvious Acme booby trap since Wile E. Coyote

YOU just know the new national curriculum is bad when the Federal Labor Party fully endorses it. Highlights from the revised 2022 blueprint for ‘educating’ Australian children:

Children must be made conscious of their “eco identity.”
A “white invasion” will be taught “alongside” Western heritage – the latter being optional.
From the age of 14, children will be “taught how” to consent to sex.
Teenagers must ‘learn’ about “gender, power, coercion and disrespect in violent or disrespectful relationships.” In other words, they will be taught that men are the enemy.
In phys-ed, they will practice “mindfulness and positive self-talk” – whatever they are.
Students will learn about “the virtues of a vegetarian diet.”
They will also learn to prepare food “sustainably” to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.

Supporting the curriculum is a no-brainer for Labor. To oppose any of its sensible elements would only benefit the government electorally. That’s if a majority of parents still care about the quality of their children’s schooling and are sufficiently educated themselves to judge – which is by no means certain. The smart play was to sign off on the revised document, shut down any culture backlash of the Floridian kind and then push for a re-write on winning office.

The government has made that a cinch by ratcheting in false premises: the Shangri-la of Aboriginal society pre-1788; the reality of ‘climate change’; and what Natasha Bita calls the “scourge of sexual assaults” in high schools. That there is no campaigning about education shows why Australia sits in the dunce’s corner of the First World. The Liberals – as Katherine Deves found out – don’t want to be seen fraternising with a ‘conservative’ cause; Labor (for now) with anything indictably woke. As a polity, we don’t care as much about learning as we do infantile gotchas.

Bella d’Abrera, Institute of Public Affairs: New curriculum, same old leftist ideological bent
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10 Responses to The most obvious Acme booby trap since Wile E. Coyote

  1. C.L. says:

    Children will be taught about their “eco identity’’, safe dating and giving clear sexual consent, in a new national curriculum that combines back-to-basics rigour in maths and English with “woke” schoolwork.

    Aboriginal perspectives of a white invasion will be taught alongside concepts of a Christian and Western heritage in a more balanced bid to end the “culture wars’’, in the ninth version of the curriculum, published on Monday for classroom teaching from next year.

    Respectful relationships will be taught from the first year of school, with teenagers instructed how to clearly give or deny consent to sex, and told about the “role of gender, power, coercion and disrespect in violent or disrespectful relationships”.

    Mindfulness and positive self-talk will be covered in the new physical education curriculum, which explores the “eco-identity’’ of students.

    Students are taught the virtues of a vegetarian diet – one activity is to prepare a presentation on food that has been “prepared sustainably’’, using local ingredients to cut down on emissions, using vegetarian or vegan dishes or kangaroo instead of beef, and not using single-use plastic for serving. They can use “nature experiences to understand how these activities can promote the development of eco-identity and positive sense of wellbeing’’.

    To tackle a scourge of sexual assaults between high school students, teens from the age of 14 will investigate the legal requirements for their state or territory in relation to seeking, giving and refusing consent to sex.

    To “enhance the safety and wellbeing of sexual partners’’, students in Years 9 and 10 will learn about “safe dating’’, including how to communicate feelings, ­respect boundaries and choices, and gain affirmative consent to sexual activity.

    History lessons have been made more balanced and relevant to Australian students, with a new “deep time” strand focusing on Aboriginal and Torres Strait ­Islander history and the impact of European arrival, including the concept of an “invasion’’.

    “The occupation and colonisation of Australia by the British, under the now overturned ­doctrine of terra nullius, were experienced by First Nations Australians as an invasion that denied their occupation of, and connection to, country/place,’’ the document states.

    Students will learn about the impact of British colonisation on the lives of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders, “for example, dispossession, dislocation and the loss of lives through frontier conflict, disease, and loss of food sources and medicines, the embrace of some colonial technologies, the practice of colonial religion, and intermarriage’’.

    The origins of Australia‘s democracy, and its Christian and Western heritage, will be taught explicitly, along with the diversity of Australian communities through migration.

    In Year 10, students must study World War II, as well as a learning strand called Building Modern Australia.

    Ancient Rome, Greece and Egypt will be covered alongside Aboriginal history and culture, while history students will also learn about the Great Depression, both world wars – including the Western Front Battle of the Somme and the Armistice in World War I – as well as the Holocaust and the Cold War.

    Climate change is only mentioned twice in the geography curriculum for Years 9 and 10, with students asked to investigate the “causes of human-induced ­climate change at the global scale and its impacts on Australia, Bangladesh and/or a Pacific Island country at the national scale’’.

    The Coalition and Labor both support the new curriculum, which was signed off by federal, state and territory education ministers last month.

    Its release coincides with a Labor Party plan to pay high-achieving school leavers to study to become teachers, following a Coalition pledge to weed out “dud” teachers through a literacy and numeracy test before they start a university teaching degree.

    The 2022 curriculum is more clearly written than the 2014 version, and provides more practical outlines and examples of subject content for teachers to use in classrooms, with less jargon.

    In English, children must be able to write letters, spell simple words and “experiment’’ with capital letters and full stops in the first year of school, when they are four or five years old.

    By the end of Year 3 they should be reading fluently and writing compound sentences.

    Civics and citizenship has been simplified for high school students, with more explicit teaching about the origins of Australian democracy, and its Christian and Western heritage.

    Maths teaching has been simplified to focus on mastery of mathematical concepts in the early years, with kids in the “foundation year’’ of prep or kindergarten expected to count to 20, instead of 10, and to know the days of the week.

    Students must be able to skip-count to 120 and add or subtract numbers to 20 by the end of Year 1, tell the time in Year 2 and recite their times tables in Year 3.

    The outmoded digital technologies syllabus has been updated to include cyber security and privacy for the first time.

    In high school, maths and science content has been aligned with exam questions for the Program for International Student Assessment, which measures the reading, mathematics and science knowledge of 600,000 15-year-old students across 79 OECD industrialised nations every three years. Australia has plunged to 29th place in mathematics – down from 11th in 2003 – and has slipped from eighth to 15th place in science and from fourth to 16th place in literacy.

    The Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority, which designed the updated curriculum, said it had been developed “with teachers for teachers’’.

    ACARA chief executive David de Carvalho said the “more stripped back and teachable curriculum’’ would make teachers’ work easier.

    “Teachers will be able to quickly and intuitively find relevant ­information, and lessons can be more easily planned,’’ he said.

    MultiLit director of strategy Jennifer Buckingham, whose PhD research was on effective instruction for struggling readers, welcomed the new focus on teaching children to read and write through phonics – sounding out letters and sounds.

    The curriculum has been published as 1.2 million students start sitting for the 2022 NAPLAN test.


    Natasha Bita: New curriculum: eco identity, dating and the three Rs.

  2. C.L. says:

    The national curriculum determines what every Australian child will be taught from prep to year 10. The latest version, released on Monday and to be implemented from next year, has been approved by state Labor and Liberal governments as well as endorsed by the Morrison government. It is marginally better than the earlier draft that provoked a public outcry.

    English and maths have been improved, but the subjects that inform how Australians think about our country and ourselves are even more ideologically loaded than previous drafts. Anzac Day is no longer contested, but what education bureaucrats grudgingly give away with one hand, they gleefully grab with the other.

    What the national curriculum authority has produced is a political document infused with a pagan-green ideology. This is apparent in the health and physical education syllabus, as years 9 and 10 are taught to “engage in nature experiences to understand how these activities can promote the development of eco-identity and positive sense of wellbeing, including exploring how a deep connection to country/place enhances health and wellbeing for First Nations Australians”.

    While an “eco-identity” is not elaborated on, like so many bad ideas it comes from academe. In discussing “ecocultural identity” in 2020, Ben Knight from the University of NSW writes: “The failure of the majority of the world to acknowledge the ecological in ourselves – its denial even – has led to environmental crises, a sort of global identity crisis driving the most pressing problems of our time, from climate crisis to Covid-19.” He quotes UNSW faculty of arts and science associate professor Tema Milstein: “One of the core premises (in) Western/ised cultures is that humans are not nature, that humans are not the environment, and that the environment is kind of a backdrop to humanity … the majority of societies now have reoriented their identities to be based on this separation in a way that has become very destructive.”

    In other words, nature is good and humans are evil. This is the message which with children are being indoctrinated, and they are being set on the path to pantheism as soon as they get to school.

    Throughout the new prep to year 6 curriculum, the under-12s are continuously encouraged to think about themselves in terms of how they relate to the environment, as well as through the lens of First Nations Australians. In geography, children repeatedly are told they must care for places that are inextricably tied to their identity. What is more, First Nations Australians consistently are held up as role models when it comes to the environment.

    It begins in prep, when they identify “the places, communities, country/place they live in”. In year 1 they look at “how places change and how they can be cared for by different groups, including First Nations Australians”. By year 4, geography is about “how people’s connections with their environment can also be aesthetic, emotional and spiritual” as well as how “sustainable use and management of renewable and non-renewable resources including the custodial responsibility First Nations Australians have for country/place”.

    Children are being taught it is better to be an Indigenous Australian than any other type of Australian. This is consistent with the teaching of Australia’s history.

    In year 4, children will learn “the effects of contact with other people on First Nations Australians and their countries/places following the arrival of the First Fleet and how this was viewed by First Nations Australians as an invasion”. If they keep referring to Australia as having been invaded, it doesn’t matter what they teach them post-1788 because there will always be a sense of guilt associated with being a non-Indigenous Australian.

    Education ministers clearly are not listening to parents about what they want for their children. In a poll commissioned by the Institute of Public Affairs, 56 per cent of the respondents thought parents should have the greatest say over what is taught to Australian schoolchildren. Just 10 per cent thought it should be bureaucrats, and only 5 per cent thought it should be politicians.

    This is what happens when you hand your children over to the state. What about parents who might want their children to develop an identity other than an “eco-identity”? Who would like their children to have an identity based on family or religion?

    The timing of version 9.0 is impeccable. In the middle of the election period, the education elite make minor changes to pretend they are listening to parents, desperately hoping we won’t see. But we do see. We see that every draft version of the curriculum gets worse and worse and that it is now beyond redemption.

    It is time to abolish the national curriculum, to take education out of the hands of left-wing ideologues and to return it to parents.


    Bella d’Abrera is director of the Foundations of Western Civilisation Program at the Institute of Public Affairs.

  3. Old School Conservative says:

    It is time to abolish the national curriculum, to take education out of the hands of left-wing ideologues and to return it to parents.

    Totally agree, BUT how?
    Also, I think that many young parents are already so indoctrinated by existing brainwashing techniques in our schools that they will be swept along by the “rationale” for the new curriculum.
    Controlling education is the cornerstone of Marxist progression through society and that power base will not be ceded easily.
    Absent an Elon Musk-type takeover of private schools and the implementation of a conservative curriculum, I can’t see any alternative to the National Curriculum.

  4. Boambee John says:


    This can only be done by a decades-long reverse “Long March Through the Institutions”, to either return them to their true purpose, or demolish them.

  5. John Brumble says:

    The sexual assault response from teachers is exactly the same as their bullying response. It was too hard to deal with the actual trouble makers, so they’ve instituted rules so that they can punish the kids at the bottom of the social ladder. No pushback and they get to say they are doing something. Meanwhile the same kids get bullied and pushed around. .

  6. Lee says:

    Meanwhile, I wouldn’t be at all surprised if Australian educational standards in the basics – maths, English, geography, etc. – are still poor by international standards.

  7. jupes says:

    What is more, First Nations Australians consistently are held up as role models when it comes to the environment.

    Well the Aborigines I see around town are yet to master the skill of putting their rubbish in a bin, so let’s hope the kiddies don’t take that as example of caring for the environment. But really, this Aboriginal worship has become a very destructive force in our society. Enough.

  8. Shy Ted says:

    Let’s hope this is the final nail in the ScuMo coffin.

  9. Wally Dali says:

    C.L., love your work… but please don’t fall into the po mo habit of using the intransitive verb learning when you need to use the traditional and unambiguous noun education.

  10. Old Lefty says:

    Catholic readers should note that Da I’d De Carvalho, the head of the curriculum authority that has produced this bilge is a long-serving ‘Catholic’ ‘education’ bureaucrat. Quelle surprise! The so-called Catholic education system in this country is, with a few honourable exceptions, bureaucratic, philistine, secularist, and politically correct.

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