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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2007 Week 5 Hansard (29 May) . . Page.. 1108..


Mr Smyth: But asking for an assurance is not a briefing.

MR STANHOPE: I asked for an assurance that this exact circumstance had been taken into account and that appropriate arrangements were in place. I was given that assurance. It is just that I did not ask for the details—as I do not always ask for the details—in relation to—

Mr Smyth: You are responsible.

MR STANHOPE: I am responsible. I asked for an assurance and I received it. I was briefed. To stand up and say, "You have just admitted you weren't briefed"—it is simply not true. Here again we have a question preceded by a statement that is just plainly false. It is incredibly difficult for ministers to answer those questions, because they require us to respond to a falsehood. I asked for the assurances and I received them—that those circumstances, in relation to people precisely as described by you, were incorporated into the emergency planning of Actew and our services. I received that assurance.

Physical education

MS PORTER: My question is to the Minister for Tourism, Sport and Recreation. Minister, following the recent Revitalising Physical Education in Australian Schools forum, can you outline to the Assembly the link between physical activity and education?

MR BARR: I thank Ms Porter for her ongoing interest in the education portfolio. It does stand in marked contrast to that of the shadow minister. Ms Porter has been able to ask a detailed question relating to important aspects of the education system every day in question time in the last two or three sittings, and there has not been one single question this year from the shadow minister.

Let me state from the outset that I and the government believe very strongly that improved quality of physical education in our schools will lead to improved outcomes across a range of education indicators. The evidence for this is considerable and was demonstrated, with particular application from the United Kingdom, by our guest speakers, Sue Campbell and Stephen Grainger, at the forum that was held on 16 May at the national library. It was a very important forum and I was very pleased to have had the opportunity to take part in it and be able to spend the entire day at the forum. I acknowledge that the shadow minister for sport and recreation was also able to attend.

I found it a particularly interesting and invigorating discussion about how we can do better with physical education in our schools. I am sure the shadow minister would agree that there were a lot of quality contributions from people from across the nation and from our friends from the UK. It is an important opportunity that I hold, as the only minister for education and sport in the nation, to do some further work not only locally in the territory but nationally to improve the quality of physical education in our schools.


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