Colleen Harkin

National Manager, Class Action Program and Research Fellow

Colleen Harkin joined the Institute of Public Affairs as a Research Fellow and as the National Manager of the Class Action research program. She holds a Master degree of Education, a Bachelor of Education, and has undertaken a post graduate course in High Incidence Difficulties and a Diploma of Teaching.

Colleen has been a classroom teacher in both primary and secondary schools, across government and private schools. She has also worked as an education consultant in Australia and in Japan.

Colleen also has experience in the IT sector, in business development and project management, and owned her own small business in the development of award-winning bespoke databases and widgets for a range of international clients.

Most recently worked with Hon Senator Jane Hume MP and returned to the classroom to occasionally engage in relief teaching.

As a teacher and a mother, Colleen is passionate about lifting standards in the Australian education system. Through her work at the IPA Colleen aims to undertake research and build resources that empower educators, parents and students with the knowledge and capability to become independent and proud citizens.

Colleen has served for many years as an executive committee member on a number of school and community sporting clubs and on the fundraising arm for the Royal Children Hospital She continues to organise an annual fundraising event for RCH. She has been politically active throughout her life in both fund raising and policy input. She enjoys a good steak tartare, time at the beach, building and home renovations.

Canberra Isn’t Listening To Indigenous Voices On Remote Education
17 August 2023

Canberra Isn’t Listening To Indigenous Voices On Remote Education

Hypocrisy within government undermines the credibility of policymakers, erodes public trust, wastes precious time, and squanders taxpayer funds. An example of this is the federal government’s decision to spend upwards of $380 million to conduct the referendum for the Voice to Parliament proposal, while simultaneously cutting funding to remote schools serving Indigenous communities, and cancelling plans to build two much
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The Achievements Of Captain James Cook Are A Story for The Ages
30 April 2023

The Achievements Of Captain James Cook Are A Story for The Ages

In this article, Colleen Harkin contextualises and disseminates the findings of the IPA’s research into the national curriculum, conducted as part of the IPA’s Foundations of Western Civilisation Program. The Foundations of Western Civilisation Program was established in 2011 to defend and extend Australians’ understanding of the influential, historical role of the West in establishing many of the liberties enjoyed
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Let Teachers Teach
31 March 2023

Let Teachers Teach

As recent footage of a teacher losing control of a New South Wales classroom received widespread coverage in the media, it begs the question: just how many teachers across the country are pushed to breaking point every day and what does this say about the state of our education system? The undeniable fact is the Australia’s education system is in
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Right To Faith-Based Education Sacrificed At The Altar Of Progressivism
23 March 2023

Right To Faith-Based Education Sacrificed At The Altar Of Progressivism

If, like most of us, you are under the impression that parents have a “right” to see their children educated within their own values system, you are mistaken. In practice today, mainstream religion, and all the values that it connotes, are being erased from our national education system. Every child in Australia has the right to, and is guaranteed, a
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De-educating Australia: How The National Curriculum Is Failing Australian Children
21 March 2023

De-educating Australia: How The National Curriculum Is Failing Australian Children

The Australian education system is in crisis, and at the heart of this crisis lies the National Curriculum. The curriculum dictates what every child in Australia should know. Sadly, it is becoming increasingly apparent that it is failing to fulfil its purpose, which is to educate Australian children. Unfortunately, Version 9 of the National Curriculum, which will be implemented in
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Cut The Fat In The Curriculum
17 November 2022

Cut The Fat In The Curriculum

This article was originally published in The Spectator Australia. In this article, Colleen Harkin contextualises and disseminates the findings of the IPA’s research into the national curriculum, conducted as part of the IPA’s Foundations of Western Civilisation Program. The Foundations of Western Civilisation Program was established in 2011 to defend and extend Australians’ understanding of the influential, historical role of
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