工党不顾选民大量流失风险、攻击宗教学校 Labor risks voter whirlwind with attack on faith-based schools

周一,由工党发起的《性别歧视修正案(消除对学生的歧视)》在参议院意外延期,为澳大利亚宗教教育有趣的一个月划上了句号。如果该法案获得通过,它将通过新成立的众议院交叉席位、迅速成为法律。

Monday’s shock delay in the Senate of the Labor-sponsored Sex Discrimination Amendment (Removing Discrimination Against Students) Bill has capped off an interesting month for Australian religious education. Had it passed, it would have sprinted into law through the newly minted cross-bench of the House of Representatives.

原文 Source:

https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/labor-risks-voter-whirlwind-with-attack-on-faith-based-schools-20181205-p50ke7.html

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这是一场通过议会喧闹的剧场来展示政府在众议院人数减少的闹剧。然而,自周一以来,令人意外的是,该法案一直像只猫鼬一样站起来又蹲下去(译者注:形容该法案在短时间内来回出现),工党迅速反对政府的修正案,总理用良知投票推动自己的版本,工党周三拒绝良知投票,所有版本像海鸥在争夺一根薯条一样,似乎到圣诞节前都不太可能得到解决。

It was a glamorous demonstration of the government’s decreasing numbers in the House through loud parliamentary theatre. Since Monday’s surprise, however, the bill has been popping up and down in motions like a meer cat, with Labor standing fast against the government’s amendments, the Prime Minister moving his own version with a conscience vote, Labor refusing a conscience vote on Wednesday, and all versions being torn at like seagulls fighting over a chip. Whether anything can be resolved this side of Christmas is unlikely.

但议会闹剧是一回事,创造持久的社会变革是另一回事。澳大利亚庞大的宗教学校和高等教育机构对这种突然的速度感到不安,像一辆极左失控的货车一样往前冲,从起步到全面立法只用了不到两个月的时间。在法律上,学校和高等院校将会由于他们关于人类身份与性的保守宗教教义,在教学或招聘方面面临许多法庭诉讼。

工党法案将取消现有允许宗教机构根据性别、性取向和婚姻状况歧视学生或教职员工的豁免权,。对于大的世俗主义者来说,我确信这是个好消息。然而,对于工党和LGBTQI的学生和工作人员来说,这是一个危险的消息。

But parliamentary theatre is one thing, creating enduring social change is another. The massive Australian religious schooling and tertiary sector has fretted about the sudden pace: charging like a hard-left runaway wagon, from a standing start to full-blown legislation in less than two months. Schools and tertiary colleges would be legally exposed to many splendid variations of court action for teaching or hiring according to their conservative religious doctrines about human identity and sexuality.

The Labor bill would remove existing exemptions that allow religious institutions to discriminate against students or staff on the basis of gender, sexuality and marital status. For Big Secularists, I am sure this is jolly good news. For the Labor Party and LGBTQI students and staff, however, this is dangerous news.  

强制执行这项立法可能会在选民之间的烧烤对话中演变成政治讽刺: 联盟党支持宗教学校和宗教自由权利,工党反对它们。

事实上,在这个国家,宗教学校招收的学生远远超过一百万。事实上,世界各地的学者和政策制定者都在关注澳大利亚,因为该国宗教学校所占比例很高,而且经合组织(OECD)将澳大利亚列为世界上择校机会及种类最多的国家。

Steamrolling this legislation could ferment into political caricatures in barbecue conversations among voters: the Coalition in favour of religious schools and religious freedoms, Labor against them.

The fact is that religious schools enrol well over a million students in this country. Indeed, Australia is being watched by academics and policymakers worldwide, because of its uniquely high proportion of religious schools, and what the OECD classifies as the highest access to school choice in the world.

约75%的澳大利亚人将孩子托付给公立小学。然而,随着青春期的到来,更多的学生进入了非政府中学。全国平均水平约为39%。去年在维多利亚州,43%的学生就读于非政府高中。几乎所有这些学校都是宗教学校,大部分是基督教学校。

那些进一步深入探讨澳大利亚统计局(Australian Bureau of Statistics)的人,会发现其他令人吃惊的社会模式。在六到七年级从公立学校转学到私立学校的人数飞跃是显而易见的。在过去十年里,维多利亚州的宗教独立学校的人数膨胀式增长,其中七年级人数平均增长了62%。除南澳大利亚州外,所有州都发生了类似的巨大变化。

About 75 per cent of Australians entrust their children to public primary schools. However, come puberty blues, many more students attend non-government secondary schools. The national average sits around 39 per cent; in Victoria last year; 43 per cent attended non-government high schools. Almost all of these schools are religiously affiliated, mostly Christian.

Those who venture further down the rabbit hole of the Australian Bureau of Statistics will find other startling social patterns. The leap from state to independent schools between years 6 and year 7 is pronounced. In Victoria over the past decade, the religious independent school population swelled, on average, by 62 per cent in year 7. Similarly large shifts occurred in all states except South Australia.

天主教学校七年级的人数在这10年里增加了20%左右。换句话说,许多家长对于把他们青春期的孩子托付给国家感到紧张。这一转变在过去30年里稳步上升,与之形成对比的是,政府学校由小学进入中学的入学人数呈下降趋势。

父母做出这些选择的原因,在这么大的规模下,是多种多样的,而“价值观”是关键因素之一。

Catholic schools' populations rose about 20 per cent in year 7 over those 10 years. In other words, many parents are nervous about entrusting their teens to the state. This shift has increased steadily across three decades, contrasted with enrolment transition decreasing from state primary into state secondary.

The reasons parents make these choices, at this massive scale, are an infused cocktail. "Values" is one of the key ingredients.

从世界范围来看,这些数字是惊人的。立法框架不能简单地从美国或加拿大进口。澳大利亚与其他几个私立学校状况排名前五的国家相比,也有着不同的社会状况,荷兰、爱尔兰、比利时和智利和澳大利亚社会根本无法相提并论,澳大利亚是一个独特的例子。

鉴于其规模、复杂性和独特性,有关澳大利亚非政府教育的资金、歧视和产业法律方面的任何重大变革都不应仓促进行。匆忙不能成就持久的社会变革。改变如此庞大的社会契约,需要谨慎和共识驱动。

In world terms, the figures are staggering. Legislative frameworks cannot be simply imported from the United States or Canada. Nor can Australia find social equivalence with the other top-five countries for non-government schools. The Netherlands, Ireland, Belgium and Chile simply do not compare. Australia stands as a unique case.

Given its size, complexity and uniqueness, any significant changes to funding, discrimination, and industrial law around Australia's non-government education should not be rushed. Rushing will not lead to enduring social change. Changing a social contract this large needs to be cautious and consensus-driven.

毕竟,澳大利亚宗教学校里发生的事会影响数百万澳大利亚人,包括祖母和兄弟姐妹在内,这是1300万选民中的400万选民。他们很难被动员起来,也很难被唤醒。但是, 在我们肥胖的和平时期长期沉睡的情况下,立法者如以轻率的行动惊醒这些人, 他们将自食其果。

What goes on in Australian religious schools, after all, affects several million Australians.  Including grannies and siblings, this is a voter base of about four million out of a voting population of 13 million. They are hard to mobilise and slow to awaken. But perish that legislator who startles them, with rash actions, from the long slumber of our fat peacetime. They might reap the whirlwind.

Dr David Hastie is Associate Dean of Education at Alphacrucis College. He previously taught across NSW urban and rural schools for 18 years.

本文作者David Hastie博士是Alphacrucis学院教育副院长,他曾在新南威尔士州的城市和农村学校任教18年。