Parent Engagement Makes a Difference at All Ages

A new brief on the results from the 2009 Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) shows that parent support of their children’s learning has a significant effect on school achievement for children at all ages.

Students whose parents reported that they had read a book with their child “every day or almost every day” or “once or twice a week” during the first year of primary school have markedly higher scores in PISA 2009 than students whose parents reported that they had read a book with their child “never or almost never” or only “once or twice a month”. On average across the 14 countries for which data are available, the difference is 25 score points, the equivalent of well over half a school year.

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Govt. Largesse of $6m for Geelong Grammar

The extremes of wealth and poverty and its effects on education are nowhere more clearly on show than in north Geelong. Here the most expensive and luxurious private school in Australia sits alongside schools serving some of the most disadvantaged communities in the country and it all shows in their comparative results. Here also starkly revealed is the monstrous unfairness of the existing school funding model.

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Economic Inequality is the Root Cause of Education Inequality

A groundbreaking new book demonstrates that increasing inequalities in education outcomes are associated with growing income inequality. It shows that rising economic inequality is undermining one of the most important goals of public education—the ability of schools to provide children with an equal chance at academic and economic success.

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Inequity, Disadvantage and Education Outcomes

Inequity and injustice continue to pervade Australian education under Labor. Data published on the My School website show shockingly large achievement and income gaps between the richest and poorest schools while millions in government funding is wasted on the wealthiest private schools. Continue reading “Inequity, Disadvantage and Education Outcomes”

Public Education and the Disadvantaged Let Down by Labor

The My School website reveals shockingly large achievement and income gaps between the richest and poorest metropolitan schools in Australia. However, there is little difference between the results of well-off government and private schools, even though total private school income is about double that of government schools.

This suggests that nearly $400 million in annual government funding for wealthy private schools is being wasted and would be better spent on the most disadvantaged schools to improve student outcomes. Continue reading “Public Education and the Disadvantaged Let Down by Labor”

An Analysis of Trends in Enrolment Shares in ACT Schools

New school census figures for the ACT earlier this year provoked national publicity because they showed that Territory had become the first state or territory with most students in private schools at any level. The figures showed that there are more ACT students in private high schools (years 7 to 10 in the ACT) than in public schools.

An analysis of enrolment trends by the researcher Barbara Preston shows that there are several reasons for the higher share of enrolments by the private sector in the ACT compared to Australia.

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The Logic of the Education Market Revealed in English State School

The ultimate in the logic of applying market principles to education is revealed in an English state school which colour codes its students by ability. It portends the future under a market driven education system. Continue reading “The Logic of the Education Market Revealed in English State School”

The ACT School System is Under-Performing

The ACT school system is under-performing. It has very high quality outcomes, but results have declined over the period of the Labor Government and there is extensive social inequity with a large achievement gap between students from low and high income families. Social segregation is also increasing.

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ACT Legislation Is A Model for Consultation on School Closures

The consultation on school closures by the Tasmanian Greens Minister for Education, Nick McKim, is a sham. It is restricted to only four weeks, which is not nearly enough time for school communities to prepare their case. The impact statements prepared by the Minister amount to a list of benefits of closing schools and fail to spell out the full effect on families and communities.

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