The Hon. Michael Kirby

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Public Education Day 2020

PUBLIC EDUCATION IN THE TIME OF COVID19 AND AT ALL TIMES

I am proud that my entire school education was in public schools. It began at North Strathfield Infants and Primary School. It continued at Summer Hill OC class. It concluded at Fort Street High School. Wonderful teachers. Excellent values. Appropriate discipline and focus. Lifelong friendships. A continuing indebtedness.

Recent advent of COVID19 has imposed added pressures on public schools, their staff and students. However, the shining values of public education have continued and even strengthened. Our public school teachers and staff have adapted brilliantly to the new technology of safe distance teaching where required. This has demanded new talents and fresh insights. But the principles of free, compulsory and secular education have remained the bedrock, together with the values of equality and democracy.

Public education was one of the grand experiments adopted throughout Australia in colonial times. It remains one of our nation’s most precious features. We must guard it, support it and fund it properly.

The Hon. Michael Kirby

The Hon. Michael Kirby shares encouraging words about Public Education and the vital role public schools play in supporting great Australian lives: then, now and always Public Education.

Building Great Australian Lives - a campaign by the Public Education Foundation Ltd