Australian Education Union (AEU) federal president Anglelo Gavrielatos has resigned after serving seven years in the position.
Gavrielatos will be taking up a position with the international union, Education International. He will coordinate EI’s Global Response to Education Corporations, aimed at halting and reversing the commercialisation and privatisation of education.
“The continuing push for the commodification, marketisation, commercialisation, and ultimately, the privatisation of education, is the greatest threat to high quality education for all,” he said in a statement.
“We are already seeing the effects of this agenda with the break-up of traditional school systems such as the growth in Charter Schools in the US, the Free Schools in Sweden, Academies in the UK, more recently Partnership Schools in New Zealand, and of course the Australian Government’s IPS agenda. Worse still, we are seeing the emergence and spread of government-funded, corporation-owned for-profit schools.”
Gavrielatos will vacate the position of AEU federal president on January 31, 2015.
With one month until the Victorian state election both parties have been hot on the campaign trail attempting to entice voters with education reforms.
Opposition Leader Daniel Andrews announced this week the Victorian Labor Government will reintroduce Tech Schools and boost the state’s TAFE system with a $320 million cash injection.
Labor’s ‘TAFE Rescue Fund’ will reopen closed campuses, bailout institutes at risk of financial ruin, and upgrade TAFE buildings across the state, with the proposed funds flowing as an emergency measure as early as day one of government.
“Our TAFE Rescue Fund will re-open campuses that closed, bail out campuses in strife, and upgrade labs, workshops, buildings and classrooms across our state,” Andrews said at Labor’s campaign launch. “We’ll make sure the system survives next year – but we also want to make sure it survives the next decade.”
Andrews said a Victorian Labor Government will also invest $125 million to establish 10 regional Tech Schools across the state that will focus on local industries and be open for students in Years 7 to 12.
“Students who enrol in the regional Tech will also stay enrolled in the local secondary school,” he said. “They’ll spend a set period of time every month getting their technical education alongside their secondary studies – not in place of a comprehensive education, but as part of it.”
Meanwhile Victorian Premier Denis Napthine said a re-elected Coalition would provide $3750 to each of the state’s 391 public secondary schools to buy 3D printers.
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