WA Education Minister calls for alternative programs to Safe Schools

Hon Peter Collier headshotWA’s Education Minister Peter Collier has told Perth Now that LGBTIQ students would be better served by generic anti-bullying programs instead of the Safe Schools Coalition.

Mr Collier said WA State Schools already had comprehensive anti-bullying programs.

The Education Minister described the content of the Safe Schools Coalition program that aims to reduce bulling of LGBTIQ+ students as “edgy”.

Mr Collier said the Safe Schools Coalition program had the potential to draw extra attention to LGBTIQ students.

“Fundamentally, as far as the state government is concerned, we have very comprehensive anti-bullying programs and I’m very reluctant to support a program that isolates a cohort of any particular students.”

“If anything, it draws attention to that child.” Mr Collier said.

Mr Collier said he felt some of the content in the Safe Schools program was not appropriate but acknowledged there had been only a few complaints about the program.

Sixteen of 800 public schools in Western Australia are currently using the program since it was made available late last year. Three private schools have also signed up to the Safe School’s Coalition.

Opposition leader Mark McGowan said a “right wing clique’ of WA Liberals were driving the issue.

Last week Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull caved in to South Australian senator Cory Bernardi, and other right wing members of his party, and ordered a full investigation into the program.

 

OIP Staff

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