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School leaving age rears its head

By johnboy - 28 January 2009 21

There’s a bit of news around following a solid piece of youth-bashing out of NSW where they’re going to raise the school leaving age.

Effectively this forces kids who don’t want to be there to disrupt the education of others for an extra year.

Here in Canberra the Liberals’ Steve Doszpot appears to have never seen a piece of knee-jerk reactionism he didn’t like and is broadly supportive without committing to anything as onerous as a policy.

UPDATED: The other shoe drops. The Canberra Times has Andrew Barr’s plans on this issue.

What’s Your opinion?


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21 Responses to
School leaving age rears its head
frontrow 12:20 pm 29 Jan 09

It’s unfortunate that so many life defining decisions are foisted on us during adolescence. I don’t think raising the school leaving age would be very helpful.

I think it would be better to improve accessibilty to adult education for those of us who couldn’t handle school as a teenager, or just made dumb choices out of rebelliousness, hormonal distractions or whatever trivial issue felt world-shatteringly important at the time.

jakez 11:19 am 29 Jan 09

For the most part I quite enjoyed my school years Pommy bastard.

I support a plurality of options, I never suggested that they shouldn’t be educated in those facilities (for most people it is their only option available).

Pommy bastard 10:59 am 29 Jan 09

jakez said :

I wouldn’t wish more forced years in those brainwashing moron factories on anyone.

Brainwashing moron factories…

Hmmmmm… sounds like someone didn’t have an idyllic school experience.

Where would you suggest our kids are educated Jakez, if not in these “brainwashing moron factories”.

jakez 9:48 am 29 Jan 09

I wouldn’t wish more forced years in those brainwashing moron factories on anyone.

Everything I think about this issue has been said above by others who are opposed to increasing the leaving age. Bugger that.

neanderthalsis 9:12 am 29 Jan 09

Most other states have already gone down a similar path. It’s not as simple as staying at school until you turn 17, then being set free. It is an “earn or learn” system where you are required to be engaged in some form of educational (including VET / apprenticeships) or employment based activity until you turn 17. After 17 you’re free to go on the dole and never work again…

There are plenty of opportunities for the less academically inclined of those who want a more practical education to do some practical learning , Tom Tom mentioned the SNAP program (now called ASBAs), there is the Australian Technical Colleges, like the one in Quangers, career taster programs, combined senior 1st year uni programs and plenty to keep the yoof off the streets and in some smeg green painted place of learning.

housebound 8:37 am 29 Jan 09

I side with the Greens on this. It’s a silly idea. And anyway, perhaps they should look at imrpoving eductaion before they force all the kids to stay for longer. I had vague memories of this silly idea being jumped on frm a great height when it was first proposed last year, but I can’t remember any details now.

As for this:
Mr Barr said he hoped to push the change through the Legislative Assembly in the next few months

It shows nothing has changed.

Pommy bastard 7:45 am 29 Jan 09

The problems we face in education today are not due to the length of time pupils are at school, it’s the left wing idea that all pupils should receive the same education.

Unfortunately it’s only kids in private schools who have the sensible idea of education to the best of their ability.

Schools need streaming, the brighter kids should be hot-housed, the less bright given education to their own level. Back in the days of yore we had grammar and secondary modern schools, and even within them there was streaming based on ability.

Grammar school prepared kids for University and the professions, secondary modern for the trades and manual work.

Mobility between schools and streams was encouraged.

Today it’s all a bland hodge podge.

tom-tom 11:05 pm 28 Jan 09

Whoops; I second what bd84 said not taco, though I agree with all tacos point except the one about limmiting the dole.

tom-tom 11:02 pm 28 Jan 09

but thumper the world has changed a lot since you left school, 20 years ago a yr ten certificate was worth a lot more than it is now. Even getting a trade now days requires a fairly high level of education. So i dont think raising the school leaving age to a point where those who do leave are educated enough to find employment is ” ridiculous in the extreme”.

On topic I second what taco said and offer as my preffered option the SNAP scheme we had when I was at school where you spent a couple of days a week at CIT during years 11 @ 12 and finnished school as a second year apprentice who also had a yr 12 certificate.

Thumper 9:31 pm 28 Jan 09

Back in the dark ages when I went to school, kids who were going to uni went to year 12. Everyone didn’t. The reason being, they were learning their trade after year 10.

The system worked. Raising the minimum leaving school age is ridiculous in the extreme.

taco 9:18 pm 28 Jan 09

I never understood why the compulsory school attendance was linked to an arbitrary age rather than a logical goal such as completing year 10 cert or equivalent.
As it is the kids that are “at risk of falling through the cracks” just disrupt everyone else while they wait for the anniversary of their birth to stop showing up (if they showed up much anyway)
Make joining the dole queue dependent upon completing a basic level of education (yr10) and thus demonstrating the necessary literacy and numeracy skills to potentially be a productive member of society.

bd84 8:53 pm 28 Jan 09

BerraBoy68 said :

Having read Steve’s press release I can’t see he’s saying, or committing himself to, anything radical or inflammatory. He just said he’s open to discussion on a topic of relevant to his portfolio. Didn’t Mick Dodson say something similar this week on a topic of interest to him? I’d rather have openness to discussion any day rather than just a ‘No’ without informed debate.

Personally, I’m of the mind that raising the leaving age isn’t the answer (I doubt this proposal would get up anyway)but I would welcome any policy that stops kids ‘falling through the cracks’. Maybe it’s more traineeships, work experience, etc. I don’t know, but I give it a week before someone writes to the CT mentioning National Service. To this I would say ‘No’.

If anyone has actually listened to any of the news coverage on the matter the option is to stay in some sort of education until they are 17, it doesn’t necessarily say the proper school environment and can also be tafe learning. If it helps minimise kids dropping out of school at 15 to sit around on government benefits all day for the rest of their lives it’s worth trying.

I think raising the age of leaving school in the ACT has been discussed not too long ago too.

BerraBoy68 7:47 pm 28 Jan 09

Having read Steve’s press release I can’t see he’s saying, or committing himself to, anything radical or inflammatory. He just said he’s open to discussion on a topic of relevant to his portfolio. Didn’t Mick Dodson say something similar this week on a topic of interest to him? I’d rather have openness to discussion any day rather than just a ‘No’ without informed debate.

Personally, I’m of the mind that raising the leaving age isn’t the answer (I doubt this proposal would get up anyway)but I would welcome any policy that stops kids ‘falling through the cracks’. Maybe it’s more traineeships, work experience, etc. I don’t know, but I give it a week before someone writes to the CT mentioning National Service. To this I would say ‘No’.

caf 7:33 pm 28 Jan 09

That’s one way to push unemployment figures down – for one year, anyway!

Feebles 6:14 pm 28 Jan 09

Looks like the NSW govt has found a way to punish the teachers for that payrise after all.

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