Tuesday, 18 March 2014
Matters of Public Importance
First, I would like to acknowledge the group of students who have only just left, in the last two minutes, the gallery above us here and to commend their teachers, who have brought them to this place to further their education about the democratic principles—they were in the gallery in front of you, Senator Scullion—that underscore our great country and, in particular, this place. But how confused must they have been while listening to some of the contributions made in this debate. They would be saying, 'Who were they actually talking about?' Here we had some students who had been brought here, clearly, by great teachers, who consider it important to teach them about the importance of this institution. I also think about those who are listening to the broadcast, because what we have heard in so many contributions on this matter of public importance is, sadly, a denigration, trashing and talking-down of the education system that we actually have in Australia—that is, a great education system.