The ideologues of choice and competition in schooling are at it again. Their latest miracle cure is Sweden, despite the fact that its next door neighbour Finland has the best school results in the world and doesn’t follow the free market ideology in education. Continue reading “Swedish-Style School Privatisation for England”
A submission by Save Our Schools to the NSW Parliament challenges the claim by private school organisations that students with disabilities in private schools receive less additional funding than in government schools. The SOS submission demonstrates that the claim is incorrect and that many private schools have a large funding advantage over government schools. Continue reading “Students with Disabilities are Better Funded in NSW Private Schools than in Govt Schools”
Following the NAPLAN tests last week, there were several reports about schools spending inordinate amounts of time on test practice to improve school results to the detriment of other areas of the curriculum. Continue reading “Intensive Test Practice Takes Over the Classroom”
The pressure on schools to improve school league table rankings sometimes produces innovative ways to cheat and rort school results. A report in the Canberra Times (19 May) has exposed a simple way of cheating by schools that could well be the tip of the iceberg.
Already, we have seen several allegations of schools cheating in the first national literacy and numeracy tests held since the My School website became operational. We are likely to see more and more cheating in future because of the “high stakes” involved in publishing school NAPLAN results on My School and the publication of school league tables in the media. Continue reading “Cheating on NAPLAN Tests Will Only Increase”
Changes in the demographic profiles of geographical areas between census years may invalidate many comparisons of so-called “like schools” on the My School website. Continue reading “Like School Comparisons on My School are Out of Date”
Private tutoring is the hidden face of Australian education. It is so extensive that it has been called a “shadow education system”. The My School website has given it a huge boost. Continue reading “Extensive Private Tutoring Corrupts the Reliability of School Comparisons on My School”
The so-called “like school” comparisons in the My School website are a travesty. Apart from the flaws in the measure of the socio-economic status of schools, many background factors which influence school results are ignored. A key factor which is ignored is the ethnic profile of schools.
Children from particular ethnic groups are often concentrated in particular areas and schools, and children from some ethnic communities are highly concentrated in government schools. Performance disparities between “like” schools may reflect differences in ethnic composition rather than differences in school practices. Continue reading “My School Ignores Differences in the Ethnic Composition of Schools”
The Federal Minister for Education, Julia Gillard, has announced that a review of school funding arrangements will commence in 2010 and conclude in 2011. The review will examine the funding of all schools – government and private.
A key part will be a review of future funding for private schools. The case for change is compelling. Continue reading “A Critique of the SES Funding Model for Private Schools”
The Chairman of the Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority, Professor Barry McGaw, has rejected criticisms made by Save Our Schools (SOS) that the “like school” comparisons on the My School website are biased in favour of private schools. But, his response effectively proves the SOS case and he fails to produce any evidence to support his claims. Indeed, the available evidence supports the SOS case. Continue reading “Misclassification Errors in My School Comparisons: A Response to Professor McGaw”