The Financial Crisis And The Impact On Children

There has been so much coverage on the current state of the global economy and it shows no signs of going away quickly. Without wanting to add too much more to this saturation, I really wanted to highlight two articles that I read recently which really stood out for me.

The first was on what impact the current financial crisis would have on what students are being taught at school. Having studied my Bachelor of Business in the early 90s, the free market mantra reigned supreme. It appears now though, that this could be coming to an end.

Quoted in The Age , Phil de Young the Principal from Carey Baptist Grammar noted that the current economic situation will cause changes to teaching plans:

“Not only will people be philosophically questioning the free market efficiency, the facts will say that the free market should not be allowed to be that free again,”

The senior economics teacher at Trinity Grammar School, David Mansour told The Age:

“We will be looking at economic history being made and the advent of more economic regulation,” he said. “This is a moment in time that will be remembered by those who study economics.”

The second article was from Professor Fiona Stanley and was published in The Sunday Age (05/10/08). The emphasis of this article was on how

“In an affluent nations such as ours [Australia], how is it that so many young people are struggling?”

When talking of struggling she quotes these statistics – 14% suffer a mental health problem, on in four are overweight or obese and the rates of child abuse and neglect have doubled in the past decade. This happened when “Economists promised us that the focus on wealth creation would create a better world for everyone.”

What I wonder is, seeing that the obsession with economic growth did not deliver benefits to all as promised, what will happen to the struggling young people, now that there has been such a dramatic economic turn around?