Governing from Gulkula
For four days Tony Abbott governed the country from a tent at Gulkula in North East Arnhem Land. It cost a lot more to stay in that tent than to stay in a five star hotel. So the question is: Was anything achieved by the Prime Minister’s visit? Did the Prime MInister see what he needed to see? Maybe there is room for a little optimism. Gulkula is a place renowned by the Yolngu people. It is a place where the Garma Festival of Traditional Culture is held each year and where in the ashes of Dhupuma College a bush university is planned. There is also talk of a network of independent homeland schools with a board of governors made up of Yolngu elders. While the visit proved disappointing in some areas - the question of homeland schools and local boarding schools and relationships with schools in the South is an important issue that is beyond politics and deserves universal support.