A Naplan Victim’s Prayer

May the fleas of a thousand camels infest the crotch of those who invent, distribute, administer, supervise or approve of NAPLAN testing ;
and may their arms be too short to scratch.

While many memes spread unaided, this scato-meme, because of its scatological consistency, requires extra assistance from powerful people and the presence of an ideologically corrupt system. Australia is well suited.

I’m giving the Treehorn crusade away shortly. It’s a waste of time. The bullies are just too big…and I’m an aged coward.  But – I reckon it’s worth my reviewing the circumstances of the use of NAPLAN as a controlling device of the nation’s schooling, however, because I’ve spent a few years at it.

I have rationalised the reasons for my failure, especially in the light of my high-level 2008 confidence that Australia’s teaching profession would reject such abuse of children’s mental health outright…from the very beginning.  I couldn’t see it lasting more than six months! It did, so I felt that our kids needed an advocate whose own life had been about schooling.  It seemed obvious that the Australian public just cannot handle this sort of schooling problem and were prevented from talking about it. I thought that I could help.  Silly moo.

To ease the pain caused by my inadequacy, I’ve rationalised why things have proved to be so difficult…

1. We have a school rigorous testing culture that is a product of our colonial convict history. Most folk approve of rigorous mass testing as a component of schooling because that’s the way the British grammar schools operated at the time of settlement. Phillip, Hunter, King nor Bligh and free citizens would never have considered thinking about alternative ways of operating ‘government’ schools. We got stuck with it. Sadly then, our post-WW1 grasp of the coat-tails of the U.S., its corporate management style  and its schooling history  has ensured that, in the modern era,  we should learn only from them, no matter what level of ideological corruption exists there. Our masters live there and they guide us on important aspects of our political agenda [education, defence, notions of social justice] and how to use the corporate world’s  moral compass for a set purpose.  As specious as their expertise may be, we are obliged to follow them. So. A peculiar mixture of British loyalty and Yankee hegemony combine to ensure that  an invisible government controls our future as a nation….that’s if you believe that schooling helps a nation to grow. When we join other countries in our Asian galaxy, though,  I wonder what will happen. For the present, we don’t know what we are doing; but our Anglo-Yankee disposition ensures that testucation is preferred to education.

We are not inclined to be daring and to think for ourselves like some countries do. We could easily out-Finnish the Finns if we wanted to try and become the learning capital of the world. We just don’t want to try.

I should have realised.

2. The other significant reason, as far as I can tell, is that Aussie sense of ‘being tough’.  This too, probably comes from our convict heritage. Records  of one of our own  family’s heroes tell us that one of them received twenty-five lashes for being cheeky to his boss while working on Bruny Island and had to go back to work immediately afterwards. That’s the kind of thing we admire. …stiff upper lip….and getting back to work….the Kokoda spirit of never giving in….the Anzac spirit of hanging in there, enhances the attitude of being tough and immortalises the uniqueness of ourleaders.  It’s easier to manage things by adopting a tough stance  than to  encourage innovation and creativity and zest for learning in humane ways.

‘Bugger the kids’ feelings.  I had it tough. Didn’t do me no harm.  Why can’t they cop the crap? They must be sooks.’

The depth of importance of naplanning our curriculum is oceanic. It is tearing our education system apart and our ‘go with the flow’ mentality is no help. The Orwellian characteristics of the change, and the eichmannist tendencies of the operators have combined to serve the delusional high priests of measurement, the greedy pirates of Wall Street, the pilferers of curriculum and userpers of critical learning time to a feeling of high-level, confident totalitarian command and bullying control that has been previously unknown in the caring professions…..but….it’s anything for a quick buck.

As S. Spears said, ” IF YOU CAN’T FEEL THE SPIRIT OF A CHILD,  OPT OUT!”  [If that was the battle=cry for 2017, we wouldn’t h

School leaders are getting too used to using Eichmann’s excuses for their fawnication, to Milgraming the kids to the full 450 volts without remorse, to being Stockholmed too easily in order to enjoy the blessing of superiors, to faking interest in the plight of girls like Lucy Clark’s daughter. Remember her view of the chasing of scores and numbers in the schooling examination processes? [1] Now  envoys of distress, anxiety and grief, they have been psyoped with military proficiency. Once the guardians of child welfare and hope, they have abandoned the Treehorns of this world, who just want to be noticed and  loved and helped

Both of these attitudes of being tough in a hard-nosed testing culture are to hard to beat when the perpetrators are so powerful. I give up.

At the same time, I’m left  with a truckload of descriptions of NAPLAN…….Yes. I’ll just ponder on them and cry.

immoral, unprofessional, politically corrupt, corporate controlled, unrequested, forced,  focused on mediocrity, of tawdry origin, outsourced by News Ltd., the

worst possible form of kleinism, abhorred by ethical professionals, extremely wasteful and costly, product of kitsch political tactics, schadenfreude, assertoric, despised by the teaching profession,  distrustful and fearful of logical debate, disrespectful  of  ethical reasoning,,

This hidden power to dominate the most caring of caring professions, exemplifies a charade democracy imposing  a pedagogical heresy on its citizens – that fear is the best thing to use in the instruction of  others.”

“While many memes spread unaided, this scato-meme, because of its scatological consistency,  requires extra assistance from  powerful people and the presence of an ideologically corrupt political system. Australia is well suited.”

“The narrative that fear is a greater motivator than intrinsic love is becoming embedded in the psyche of Australian school leaders.  We still have a chance to change from the ‘lawyer’s lore’ to the ‘principal’s principle'”….from ‘stand-over’ to ‘learn-with’ ”

“GERM – an acronym for Global Education Reform Movement [Pasi Sahlberg] now has a new meaning – Geopolitical Emetic Retard Meme.

We live in dangerous times.

As Martin Luther King pointed out : “Nothing in the world is more dangerous  than ignorance and conscientious stupidity.”  NAPLAN’s birth at a New York booze-up provides ample testimony to this quotation. To make things worse, the promoter of the heresy, Julia G, had the hierarchical clout to dominate her co-neo-liberals in the Australian Labor and Liberal Parties to such an extent that political skulduggery became the main from all sides; and no politician since has been brave enough to question the existence of NAPLAN’s cancerous influence. Not one!  Her successors , especially Pyne and Birmingham, were able to adopt a fascist stance…..hand money around in willy-nilly fashion and threaten those who do not improve their ubiquitous test scores….eventually finishing school with an allocated  number that pretends to describe achievement .


[1] Lucy Clark’s daughter did not open her ‘results’ from the Board of Studies. She told her mum, “I will not be judged by the Board of Studies.”  Her mum then said,“Every time my daughter walked past that envelope without opening it, she was saying, fuck that number. ”
[P.280 Lucy Clark: Beautiful Failures Penguin Random House 2016]



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