Page 498 - Week 02 - Wednesday, 13 February 2013

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MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Mr Gentleman.

MR GENTLEMAN: Minister, what will the students learn through having opportunities to engage in swimming, especially structured activities like races?

MS BURCH: I thank the member for his interest. Beyond the obvious application around water safety, there are some more subtle but still important skills that are learnt at this early age when children take part in structured school swimming activities such as those covered by this policy—skills, for example, around physical and psychological endurance, which are skills that hold children in good stead through their teenage years and, indeed, into adulthood.

In and out of the pool an important life lesson is taking up the challenge, staying on course and seeing things through. School swimming carnivals teach a child that you cannot get halfway through a race, realise you cannot win and jump out of the pool to find another event that might be easier to win. Children learn at these swimming carnivals to be good sports and to race fairly and with respect for their opponents. They learn that just because you cannot win a race, it is not okay to switch lanes, to drag down your opponent and to sprint to the finish line, because that sort of conduct is not usually condoned in the real world, and it certainly is not tolerated at swimming carnivals.

The broader lessons teach us all that a commitment that is made should be followed through and not dumped at a whim, particularly like Mr Seselja has dumped the good folk of Tuggeranong. Swimming and water safety are, indeed, important life skills that provide invaluable lessons throughout life. I look forward to all ACT schools participating in swimming activities, staying true to the course and not leaving behind those that have faith in them.

Ms Gallagher: I ask that all further questions be placed on the notice paper.

Supplementary answers to questions without notice

Health—aged care

MS GALLAGHER: Yesterday in question time Mr Hanson asked me a question relating to comments I had made on ABC radio. I went back to check the transcript of what I had said and compare it to the report that I did not have before me, but I do now. As expected, Mr Hanson had selectively quoted from the transcript. I said, “I think if you look at the results, they are pleasing. If you look at cancer, if you look at aged care and rehab in time for assessments, you will see that the results there are excellent and improving.”

What Mr Hanson then did was to link it to another figure from a previous quarterly report, not comparing the numbers that I was comparing when I was making those comments on ABC radio. So I did have to go back and find where he had found 1.7 days from. For the information of members, I am very confident that I was not misleading anyone in making those comments. If you look at cancer, time for assessment in cancer had significantly improved over that year-to-date September quarter from 72 per cent to 99 per cent.

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