The following is a summary of a research paper on the
bureaucratisation of public education in Australia. It can be downloaded below.
As far as we are aware, this study is the first to use data published by the Australian
Bureau of Statistics to analyse the impact of school accountability measures on
the staffing structure of the public education system.
Australia has long been infected by what world renowned
Finnish educator Pasi Sahlberg, currently professor of education at the Gonski
Institute of Education in Sydney, coined as GERM (Global Education Reform
Movement). It is characterised by corporate management policies, test-based
accountability of schools and fostering competition between schools to drive
improvement in education outcomes. One manifestation of GERM is a bloated
bureaucracy to police compliance with regulations, collect and record information
and monitor performance.
Public school systems in Australia have seen an enormous
increase in bureaucracy since the turn of the century. So-called school reforms
beginning in the 1990s promised less bureaucratic control but instead have intensified
bureaucracy at all levels of public education systems. Both Coalition and Labor
governments have adopted GERM and expanded bureaucracy in public education.
Continue reading “The Bureaucratisation of Public Education in Australia”
US Presidential contender, Senator Bernie Sanders, has released a far-reaching program to reform public education. Many of its policies resonate in the Australian context. The following is the Introduction to the plan together with an outline of its main policies.
His first principle is fundamental:
“Every human being has the fundamental right to a good education. On this 65th anniversary of the Brown v. Board of Education decision, we are committed to creating an education system that works for all people, not just the wealthy and powerful.”
Continue reading “A Thurgood Marshall Plan for Public Education”
Much ado has been made of Gonski 2.0 and the Turnbull Government’s claim that it is a uniform, needs based and fair model for the resourcing of Australian schools. The implication is that it will lead to better learning outcomes for all children. It is certainly not uniform, though it does bring in a measure of fairness not in existence in Gonski 1.0. In the sense that it may disrupt our public/private model of education though, it is a failure. Its major consequence is the ‘segregation’ of children in their school age years based on religious beliefs, socio-economic background and even educational ability. Continue reading “The Soap Opera That Masquerades as Debate on Education Policy”
A new study shows that students who attend at partially selective schools in England do not achieve any better results than students in non-selective schools. It found that some results for students with high or low prior achievement are worse at partially selective schools than for their peers at non-selective schools. Continue reading “No Academic Benefit to Attending Partially Selective Schools”
New school enrolment data show a reversal of the steady
drift of students from public to private over the past 40 years. Figures
released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics last week show that the share
of public school enrolments increased from 60.05% of all enrolments in 2015 to
60.09% in 2016. This is the first time the public school share has increased
since the 1970s.
Continue reading “Public School Enrolments Increase”
A new study published in the latest issue of the Australian Economic Review has found that students in public primary schools achieve better results than Catholic schools and similar results to Independent schools. These findings confirm those of other recent studies in Australia and overseas that student performance in public schools is as good as, or better than, those in private schools. Continue reading “Public Primary Schools do as Well as Independent Schools and Better than Catholic Schools”
New school enrolment data show that the long-term shift of students to private schools has stopped in recent years. But, whether it will be sustained is uncertain given school funding trends that massively favour private schools.
Continue reading “Reversing the Flight to Private Schools Depends on Reforming Australia’s Incoherent and Unfair Funding System”
This is a summary of a new paper by Professor Alan Reid published by the Australian Government Primary Principals’ Association. The full paper is available on the AGPPA website Continue reading “Building Our Nation Through Public Education”
A new OECD report provides some interesting perspective on the debate over immigration in Europe and the Paris terrorist attacks. It shows a sharp contrast between the integration of immigrant children in schools in France and Belgium compared to Australia. Immigrant children in France and Belgium are the most alienated in the OECD, indicating a failure of integration, whereas far fewer immigrant children in Australia are alienated from school.
Continue reading “Integrating Immigrant Children in School is an Australian Success Story”
A Melbourne school principal responds to the school student from an elite private school who made derogatory slurs against students from public schools on social media.
If that icon of Australian satire, Barry Humphries was running around stage bagging the public school system, dressed up as an over-privileged private school student, we would all laugh. Some might even squirm at the closeness of the home-truth, but we would leave the theatre our need for humour satiated.
Today though, Barry Humphries was nowhere in sight. Rather it was the work of a Xavier College VCE student, on Facebook, with the immediate chorus of support from hundreds of online admirers. Continue reading “The Price of Privilege”