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Testing the critical literacy of voters, educators and...politicians?

Testing the critical literacy of voters, educators and...politicians?

Elisabeth GriffithsMay 27, 2016

While the Minister for Immigration and "Border Protection" has been scrutinising refugees' literacy and numeracy, the Australian Government has had its sight set on another group's abilities: Australia's pre-service teachers. Elisabeth Griffiths asks if the Literacy and Numeracy Test for Initial Teacher Education Students is worth its salt.

"I am determined to be tenacious in relation to the use of my language": Bess Price and breaking the English hegemony in NT Parliament

wamutFeb 18, 201611 Comments

Aboriginal Northern Territory MP Bess Price is fighting to be able to use her first language, Warlpiri, in parliament. She argues that it's only fair given it's her first language and the language of half her constituency. The Parliament's Speaker continues to affirm that English is the language of the Assembly. Greg Dickson explores the debate further:

You don't need English to be an Australian citizen

You don't need English to be an Australian citizen

Allie SeverinJun 3, 20152 Comments

Should we be changing our national anthem's lyrics to "We've boundless plains to share... but only if you can speak English"? Allie Severin explores the most recent proposal to make English proficiency a pre-requisite to gaining Australian citizenship

Banning prisoners from speaking Arabic is lazy and probably a human rights breach

Banning prisoners from speaking Arabic is lazy and probably a human rights breach

wamutMar 8, 20151 Comment

Arabic is not a small, minority language. It is the fourth most widely spoken language in Australia. The decision to ban some NSW prisoners speaking it is not only possibly a human rights breach but also just lazy, according to Greg Dickson.

Did C-Pyne drop the c-bomb?

Did C-Pyne drop the c-bomb?

Lochlan MorrisseyMay 15, 201458 Comments

Earlier today a number of news agencies (perhaps all of them, ever) reported on a video, in which

Let's call a cull, a cull

Let's call a cull, a cull

Lochlan MorrisseyJan 31, 20143 Comments

As the unpopular shark bait and shoot program continues in Western Australia, fisheries minister Troy Buswell has defended the policy, saying that it isn't a cull, but a 'localised shark mitigation strategy'. Lochlan Morrissey suspects Buswell learned the art of political euphemism from the best.

What's in a name? For the Timorese, quite a lot

What's in a name? For the Timorese, quite a lot

Piers KellyDec 6, 201310 Comments

How to refer to our young neighbour to the north? Is it East Timor, Timor Lorosa'e or Timor-Leste? Gordon Peake and Piers Kelly investigate.

How cuts to the NT Education Department could widen the gap

How cuts to the NT Education Department could widen the gap

wamutOct 31, 20134 Comments

First, they rejected Gonski because too much funding would go to remote community schools. Now, the NT Education department is cutting positions that are key in supporting Aboriginal students who don't speak English at home. Greg Dickson demonstrates the benefit that such support positions can bring and argues that the NT Government's handling of education could easily cause the much-discussed "gap" to widen rather than narrow.

Redefining the refugee

William SteedOct 21, 20134 Comments

Fairfax media reports that Immigration Minister Scott Morrison has sent a list of appropriate terminology for referring to refugee boat arrivals, including referring to the people as 'illegal arrivals' and 'detainees'. How does changing terminology change how we think about something?

Candidates get their language on

Candidates get their language on

wamutSep 6, 2013

One day out from the election and Greg Dickson has noticed a few more languages other than English being used in various campaigns. Is this a last-ditch effort to reach every constituent, a deliberate recognition of our linguistic diversity, or just because we can?