Curriculum review raises questions over teaching of Aboriginal history


The federal government has announced a major review into the curriculum for the nation's schools in a move that could have a significant impact on the teaching of Indigenous history.

Minister Christopher Pyne criticised the existing curriculum saying it was too "left-leaning", and more practical information should be taught to our children.

"The truth should be told about what we did to Indigenous people, but also the truth about the benefit of civilisation," Mr Pyne said.

The move is being viewed as one that could re-ignite the history wars between black and white accounts of Australia's past.

The federal opposition is accusing the Abbott government of taking their ideological views into Australian schools.

"We should stop taking politics into the classroom and assuming that just because you're an Abbott government minister you're smarter than every teacher in Australia," opposition leader Bill Shorten said.

Christopher Pyne has appointed Ken Wiltshire and Kevin Donnelly to carry out the review, which is due back in time to be implemented for the start of school next year.

But that move has also attracted criticism, and Mr Pyne has been accused of being biased.

"He's got to get over this paranoia that his view isn't being taught in schools and get on with the things that matter," acting leader of the Australian Greens Party, Richard Di Natale, said.

One of the areas for review that Mr Pyne has asked the two men to focus on is the way Indigenous Australia is taught in schools.

"The first part of our story is the Indigenous part, but then there's the other part and that needs to be told as well. That's why we need a balanced view," Mr Pyne said.

But former Independent MP Rob Oakshott says the balance is already too far skewed.

"This is not being taught well in schools. I'm surprised it's being attacked as being over-taught instead of under-taught," Mr Oakshott said.

Before the curriculum is adopted in schools it will need to be approved by state and territory governments.

The question over how Aboriginal history will be taught in Australian schools still remains.

Meanwhile, Cindy Berwick, the President of the New South Wales Aboriginal Education Consultative Group, says she's surprised by the Government's plan to again review the national curriculum.

Watch: Natalie Ahmat interviews Cindy Berwick of the NSW Aboriginal Education Consultative Group


Source NITV News

Stay up to date with SBS NEWS

  • App
  • Subscribe
  • Follow
  • Listen
  • Watch