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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2009 Week 12 Hansard (15 October) . . Page.. 4548..


MR BARR (continuing):

employed. And we know that over 90 per cent of ACT college graduates were employed or studying in 2008.

But just as importantly, education changes lives. It is the light bulb moment. It is the moment when a 15-year-old boy realises that his ability to hot-wire a car is actually a future career in the automotive industry or mechanical engineering. It is the moment when a student realises that their passion for computer games is a job in IT or graphic design. And it is the moment when a year 8 student who loves to cook but really hates maths actually realises that maths is pretty important in baking a cake. It is also the expectations game. It is when a student says, "I think I want to be a doctor,"but then worries, "That's not for the likes of me,"and a teacher, a parent or trainer steps in and tells them that it is for them and that nothing is beyond their reach.

Hannah Arendt believed that education not only prepared our children "for the task of renewing a common world"but that education is our chance to save the world from decay. Education is our opportunity to change the world, to change our nation and to change our community. It is our opportunity to stand up, to take responsibility and to say that no-one will miss out. It is our chance to transform universal opportunity into universal outcomes; to make sure that everyone learns.

But education cannot be this great force for change if we do not force change in education. So this amendment will make it compulsory for students to be at school, in training or in work until the age of 17 or the completion of year 12. As a result, all young Canberrans will complete year 10 and they will study, train or work after year 10 in a way that suits their needs, their abilities and their plans for the future.

Education and training will become more flexible in the ACT. It will centre around student choices. If they choose to spend two days on a building site, a day training and a day at school then we will support them. We are raising expectations and making everyone accountable. Everyone in our community will be responsible for no student missing out. I commend this bill to the Assembly.

Debate (on motion by Mr Doszpot) adjourned to the next sitting.

Water security—proposed select committee

MR SESELJA (Molonglo—Leader of the Opposition) (11.27): I move:

That:

(1) a Select Committee on Canberra's Major Water Security Projects ("the Projects") be appointed to inquire into, comment upon and make recommendations on the conduct of the Projects according to the following terms of reference:

An examination of:

(a) Canberra's major water security projects, including, but not limited to, the enlarged Cotter Dam project and the Murrumbidgee to Googong Bulk Water Transfer project;


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