Peter StokesBy Peter Stokes, Salt Shakers

Dear Friends and Family in Christ,
Where are we truly heading as a nation? Toward a Righteous God or away from Him?

As Bible-believing God-fearing Christians, we must get on our knees and repent, both individually and corporately as the Body of Christ in Australia! Certainly, we’re reaping what we have sowed!

It would appear that the Rudd government’s humanists, like Julia Gillard,  are already hard at work. Am I biased in saying that? Yes. Not politically, but biased toward a worldview we know is the best for our children and our nation – that worldview is a Biblical Christian worldview. We also believe that educational ‘choice’ is important – parents should be able to choose the type of education they want for their children.

An article in The Age newspaper today shows that Miss Gillard, as Education Minister, has appointed one of her kind (all-be-it male!!) to oversee the ‘national curriculum’ of our Schools. It did not take long for Professor Barry McGaw to show his disregard for ‘Christian’ schools. He criticised them for teaching the intelligent idea that the world was created rather than the illogical, and now scientifically flawed, notion that it simply evolved. The article also criticises the teaching of abstinence rather than ‘harm minimisation with regard to sex education.
We need to take action to protect our freedom to choose what we believe is best for our children.

FAITH SCHOOL BOOM “CREATES DIVISION”
THE rapid growth of faith-based schools under the previous federal government has threatened the social cohesion of the nation, according to Deputy Prime Minister Julia Gillard’s most senior education adviser. The frank comments of Professor Barry McGaw, appointed this month to be the new head of the National Curriculum Board, contrast with the Howard government’s celebration of the proliferation of small independent schools, encouraged by generous public funding. “These people often form a narrowly focused school that is aimed at cementing the faith it’s based on … If we continue as we are, I think we’ll just become more and more isolated sub-groups in our community,” Professor McGaw told The Age.

Emphasis ours – Article is attached. Link to the journalists article: http://www.theage.com.au/news/investigations/faith-school-boom-creates-division/2008/02/24/1203788146680.html?page=2

There is also a full page critique of ‘religious’ schools with a heavy emphasis on Christian schools –
Link:  http://www.theage.com.au/news/in-depth/at-the-crossroads/2008/02/24/1203788145887.html?page=fullpage#contentSwap1

ACTION PLEASE:
Write to the Age Letter Editor letters@theage.com.au
and to Julia Gillard -  Julia.Gillard.MP@aph.gov.au
Write to Kevin Rudd and paste a copy of your letter to Julia in the comment box  http://www.pm.gov.au/contact/index.cfm

Tell Julia and Kevin you support choice for parents and for schools to be able to teach the truth of creation and intelligent design. Tell her you also want the federal government to maintain their support for independent Christian schools
For general letter writing hints go to:  http://www.saltshakers.org.au/html/P/16/B/85/

Peter P Stokes
Co Founder & Executive Officer
Salt Shakers Inc


3 Responses to “Faith School Boom “Creates Division””

  1. 1 Ian

    Christians are missing out of their leadership place in the community by withdrawing their children from the state school systems. By personal experience, and the testimony of a friend at whose school our church met, schools are looking for volunteers and active participants on school councils and PFA’s. All my children went to the local State school for their primary (to year 7) education. After a debarcle regarding Halloween (we and other parents withdrew our children on the day) I was elected on to the school council. I was one of 4 Christians. We did not mention Halloween but next year and for years following it all but disappeared from the school. Because we were seen as workers and supporters of the school we had ready access to the principal to raise any concerns. The principal was not a Christian but interestingly in later years his son has become a youth leader at Edge Christian Church.

    CHRISTIANS HAVE WALKED AWAY FROM THEIR CHRIST APPOINTED PLACE IN OUR COMMUNITIES; its called SALT. We cannot then expect a secular Government to fund our disbedience.

    I do concede that we sent our children to a Christian secondary school as we felt that family influence would struggle against peer pressure in teen years; practically the allocated state high school was second rate. My 4 children have completed tertiary education (University) but more importantly are going on with the Lord. My younger son is Youth Pastor at his church and the evening services he conducts draw youth from the very high school he would otherwise have attended. Unfortunately when our children left the local school our being known in the local community died away, it could be said we are no longer effective salt in our locallity.

    PLEASE urge your readers and supporters to be active in community life, kindergartens, school PFAs, school canteens, progress associations, sporting clubs, CFS/CFA. This is our appointed and annointed role, we are wasting it.

    Bless ya

    Ian (Pastor)

  2. 2 Daryl

    Ian,

    I am glad that you got involved to make a difference in your local school, to be the salt and light. My only concern with this approach is that children, especially young children, do not know enough and could be led astray by the teaching they get or the peer pressure they face in public schools. You would have to be very strong and careful to make sure they are not mixing with the wrong people, or doing the wrong things, or believing the wrong things. Frankly, I wouldn’t risk it with my children. Though I don’t have any children yet, when I have children I will make sure that they go to a Christian school.

    In the bible it says that a student, when he is fully trained, will be like his teacher. What kind of teachers do we want them to be like? I would want to make sure that those who teach my children are strong, uncompromising christians. Being the salt and the light is important, but I think it is up to us as adults to make sure we are being the salt and the light without risking our children’s future by puting them in a public school.

    You mentioned a number of ways in which Christians can be the salt and light in our community, and all of them are good and legitimate things to be involved in. Can I suggest you add something else to the list of things that Christians should be involved in? It is very important, because, by being involved in it you can win many people to Jesus and influence the future of this whole country at the same time (including the education system). It is political parties.

    Christians have not been involved in political parties as much as we should have been, and that is why somethimes we have found ourselves with few people in the major parties who are willing to stand for Christian values. If we would get more involved, we could be the salt and the light not only to the people in the parties, but influence policy direction and the preselection process to ensure that we have a choice of real, godly leadership on election day.

  3. 3 Johann

    To: Julia.Gillard.MP@aph.gov.au
    Subject: Chaplaincy

    Hi all, just a quick comment on this;

    We in SA have had a couple of years experience about changing certain curriculums, taking religion and the word of God out of our schools, making schools more secular and more acceptable to the masses. The product produced from this so far is; moral decay, lawlessness, abuse, undisciplined children, attacks and violence in schools on a daily basis. Our administrators want to lay this at the door of so called apartheid, this has got sweet nothing to do with it, the fact that children are free to choose, and in 80% of the time they will choose to do wrong if they don’t have a standard to which they can relate. I urge you to take a page out of our book and keep the moral values, high standards and discipline in your schools by leaving the only tool you have, namely the word of God, and the people who can teach it, in your schools and curriculums.

    Johann.

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