The Tasmanian Government is treating the public with contempt over its proposal to close 20 schools. It has provided no evidence to support its case. It has failed to detail the expected savings and it has provided no evidence that closing schools will improve the quality of education.
The school communities affected have been refused critical information to assess the Government’s case and to put their own. The arrogance of the Greens Education Minister, Nick McKim, is unbelievable. When requested to provide the information, he said “look on the Internet”.
It is the Minister’s responsibility to provide this information so the Government’s claims can be properly scrutinised and assessed. This is fundamental for proper public consultation and effective public participation in government decision-making. It is a principle the Greens Party has always supported. Yet, this Greens Minister seems intent on denying school communities this right. Continue reading “The Tasmanian Government’s Case to Close Schools is Threadbare”
The Tasmanian Government is treating the public with
contempt over its proposal to close 20 schools. It has provided no evidence to
support its case. It has failed to detail the expected savings and it has
provided no evidence that closing schools will improve the quality of education.
Continue reading “The Tasmanian Government’s Case to Close Schools is Threadbare”
statements on school closures issued to school associations by the Tasmanian
Minister for Education, Nick McKim, are farcical – they present a one-sided view
of the impact of closing schools. They largely amount to a list of benefits of
closing schools. They fail to assess the benefits of keeping schools open. They
are clearly designed to support the Government’s case.
Continue reading “Impact Statements on Tasmanian School Closures are a Farce”
A new international study shows that disadvantaged students in Australia are, on average, given less opportunity to learn science at school than students from more affluent families. Disadvantaged 15 year-old students spend over 30 minutes less a week studying science than the average for all other students. This contributes to a large achievement gap in science results between rich and poor students.
Continue reading “Disadvantaged Students Get Less Opportunities in Science”
A decade or more of test-based accountability programs in the United States has had little to no effect on student achievement according to a report just published by an expert panel of the US National Research Council. The report is a devastating indictment of the focus on testing in US education policy and, by implication, Australian education policy which now closely follows the US model. Continue reading “US National Research Council Fails Test-Based Accountability Programs”
The new plan for
Canberra’s government secondary schools will provide a second class education
for the less well-off. The well-off get more challenging options and pathways. The
disadvantaged get more vocational education and at younger ages – oh, they also
get another round of rhetoric about engaging students and parents.
The plan is likely
to exacerbate the large achievement gap between rich and poor, which is already
about the largest in Australia. It is also a step backwards from comprehensive
education in government schools. It is likely lead to greater social
segregation of students between schools and within schools.
Continue reading “A High School Plan for the Well-Off”
Equity in education is the major loser in the Commonwealth Schools Budget as the Labor Government continues to give greater priority to funding privilege and market-based programs than reducing disadvantage in education. The 2011-12 Budget projects larger funding increases for private schools than government schools and introduces new market-based programs while major equity programs are wound down. Continue reading “Budget Gives Priority to Funding Privilege and Market-Based Programs”
The 2011–2012 ACT School
Budget has confirmed what we all have known for a long time—the 2006 mass
school closures was a failed policy based on false assumptions and dodgy data.
Continue reading “ACT Government Policy Backflip on School Planning”
A new study has raised concern about the growing ethnic segregation of Australian schools. It says that if current trends continue, we risk creating highly unbalanced school communities rather than communities that reflect the full diversity of Australian society.
Continue reading “Social Segregation in Sydney Schools”
When governments are looking to save money, they often turn to school closures as the answer, as has been seen in every Australian state and territory in recent years. It is a worldwide phenomenon. It has been going on in many states and school districts in the United States in the last few years. Continue reading “Study Says that School Closures are Unlikely to Deliver Financial Savings and Education Improvement”