To supplement my post Testing for English competence? read Annabel Crabb in today’s Sun-Herald.
The policy – proposed by Immigration Minister Peter Dutton with all the mellifluity of a man who has spent nine years in the Queensland Police – is currently under consideration by the parliament…
It’s drawn immediate support from Pauline Hanson.
Asked by Channel Seven what she thought of the proposed test and its associated Australian residency requirement extension from one to four years, the Senator declared: “It’s a start in the right direction.”…
The last minor mangle is a small sample of Senator Revenant’s somewhat loose connection to the English language. What price her IELTS score, I wonder?
Interesting: If you can’t speak English, you don’t deserve to call yourself a Senator, Pauline Hanson.
SHE wears her love of Australia like a badge of honour, but a leading speech expert says Senator Pauline Hanson should consider learning how to speak our language if she wants to inspire the nation.
Michael Kelly, a body language and speech expert gave Ms Hanson’s maiden speech in the Senate barely a pass mark of 5.5 out of 10, blaming her poor pronunciation and “clunky” delivery for creating an “amateurish” first impression.
Putting aside her controversial politics, the 30-minute oration was “not up to the standards Australians should expect of an inspiring member of the Senate,” Mr Kelly said.
Stumbling over basic words like “custody” and “integral,” Ms Hanson gave the impression she had not rehearsed the much-anticipated speech, which “lacked impact,” was “monotone” and at times was “twee” and “juvenile,” Mr Kelly claimed.
“It was like she was completely unprepared. She hadn’t worked out her phrasing, it was monotone and she struggled to read parts of it out,” he said.
“She was mispronouncing words like “custody” which she delivered as “cus-dy” and that just leaves an unprofessional impression,” he said…
The lowest point were her remarks offering to drive migrants to the airport herself, Mr Kelly said, immature and unbecoming of a senior parliamentarian….
To be uncharacteristically fair to the Revenant of Oz. I suspect that much of the trouble she has brought on her own head over the education of children with disabilities, particularly those on the autism spectrum, stems from her own intellectual and linguistic incapacity. Rather than being taken out of context, her remarks had been typically garbled and ill-considered, but she does have a point. There should be better training and resourcing for the education of children with disabilities in the mainstream. I have a little experience here as in my last three years of teaching one of my duties was to support one-on-one some students with Aspergers. I had a couple of successes and one not so successful. At the time (2003-2005) this was all rather new to us. Glad to say one of the students concerned is now a friend on Facebook.
Many years ago — 1970 in fact — I taught at Dapto High School, south of Wollongong. In those days we had no idea at all — I do not exaggerate — when confronted, if we were, with students with such things as Aspergers/autism. Today is so different, as this excellent page from Dapto High attests. Do visit it if you want authoritative information on the subject.
I looked that up because of an item in today’s Sun-Herald by Peter FitzSimons — someone whose writing at times annoys me. But not today…
Even for Pauline Hanson, her attack this week on kids with autism – maintaining they had no place in “our” class-rooms – took the breath away. As ever, her polarising politics is divisive, driven by a mean-spiritedness that has set post-war records in Australian politics, and entirely ill-informed. In fact, the inclusion of students on the autism spectrum and wider Special Needs students has been successful across our brown and pleasant land, and some of it I have seen up close.
TFF’s brother, Andrew, is Principal at Dapto High School, where they have run a stunningly successful integration program for students on the autism spectrum for the last nine years, and they now have no fewer than 28 of them.
“These students enrich our school and this community every day,” he told me on Friday. “Students are encouraged to participate in the full range of activities: sporting, cultural, academic etc. Participation in mainstream classes is accommodated when ever possible; often playing to particular strengths; Art , Music, Engineering etc. It works. Never had a single complaint. It is inspirational and heart-warming on so many levels for so many of our Dapto students . . . and wonderful for those on the spectrum, and their families, too.”
Great to hear!