A disturbing set of numbers

The incoming president of the Australian Mathematical Society, Nalini Joshi, writes today in the Australian on the shortages of qualified mathematics teachers at the secondary level, and the concomitant decline in mathematics achievement levels of students.

French scientists revolt against government reforms

As reported in Nature, French academics are going on a “permanent strike” to protest a government reform proposal that would allow university administrators to have more freedom in determining how teaching, research, and service will be used to evaluate faculty, although some national safeguards and guidelines will remain.  There is also opposition to a related proposal to convert research institutions such as the CNRS into research funding agencies, with the actual research being transferred to universities.

A protest letter is being circulated here (here is the English version).  Some further news items on the strike can be found at the Funneled Web and the Guardian.