Kevin Rudd promised an ‘education revolution’, to widespread acclaim and almost no opposition. In this analysis, we argue that Rudd’s education policy was paved with good intentions to redress long-term deficiencies inherited largely from the Howard years. In many respects, however, the policy lacked the strategic and structural blueprint needed to realise its underlying ideals. The lack of a coherent educational framework informed by a deep knowledge of the Australian educational sector created conflicting policy agendas, some confused objectives and a lack of focus. The unexpected advent of the global financial crisis (GFC) precipitated one of the fastest surges of spending on education in Australia’s recent history, but hurried and uncoordinated consultation and implementation processes led to some publicly damaging outcomes. These ultimately played a role in undermining the confidence of the Australian public and also Rudd’s own party. As we enter a new administration headed by Julia Gillard, the former Minister for Education, it remains to be seen whether the education revolution will lead to the fundamental systemic transformation implicit in the word ‘revolution’.
|Title of host publication||The Rudd Government: Australian Commonwealth Administration 2007-2010|
|Editors||Chris Aulich, Mark Evans|
|Place of Publication||Canberra, Australia|
|Publisher||ANU E Press|
|Number of pages||19|
|Publication status||Published - 2010|