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Turner backs ‘core values’ education in schools

Media statement
For immediate release
Wednesday, 16 April 2008

Turner backs ‘core values’ education in schools

UnitedFuture education spokesperson Judy Turner is backing the call of the Principal Youth Court Judge for ‘core community values’ to be taught and discussed in schools.

“Character education should be an integral part of schooling. It does occur in a small number of schools now, and there is clear evidence that it is beneficial for the students and communities,” she said.

“We teach science, English and geography, but the benefits are trivial compared to helping children sort out their own values system from which to base their behaviour in life.

“I am not talking about implanting a complete pre-defined moral code, but rather the promotion and discussion of core community values like honesty, integrity and kindness.”

Mrs Turner said that parents who instil values at home have nothing to fear from their children discussing values in the classroom.

“This would complement what parents are doing at home for most students – not replace or overshadow.

“But it would initiate a thought process for some kids whose parents have never bothered to discuss values at home, or whose values are questionable themselves.
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“It is the children of these parents whom Judge Becroft will see on a daily basis, and for whom character education would be of most benefit. We see stories like the 13 year olds torturing pet ducks in the papers – we need to get these kids thinking and discussing values before they get to adulthood,” said Mrs Turner.

“The Education Minister must now pick up the ball and show some leadership in this area to move character education forward. He has the full support of UnitedFuture and indeed most of the electorate to do so.”


ENDS

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