Public School Enrolments Increase

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.

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Public Primary Schools do as Well as Independent Schools and Better than Catholic Schools

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”

Reversing the Flight to Private Schools Depends on Reforming Australia’s Incoherent and Unfair Funding System

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.

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Integrating Immigrant Children in School is an Australian Success Story

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.

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The Price of Privilege

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”

Fees and Charges in Public Schools Under the Microscope

Earlier this week, The Age revealed that parents were asked to pay $270 to enrol their children at a public high school in Melbourne. The Age also reported that another school is charging for sex education classes. Such fees are inexcusable, unethical and illegal in public schools.

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Studies Show Public Schools Achieve Similar Results to Private Schools

Nearly 30 academic studies of public and private school outcomes in Australia have been published in the last 15 years. The first comprehensive review of these studies shows that the vast weight of evidence is that public schools achieve similar outcomes to private schools. The report has just been published by Save Our Schools. Continue reading “Studies Show Public Schools Achieve Similar Results to Private Schools”

Academic Study Shows that Private Primary Schools Perform no Better than Public Schools

A Queensland University study has shown that there is no difference in test results between public, Catholic and Independent primary schools after taking account of student background factors that influence school results. Indeed, Catholic schools perform worse than public schools on some results. The study says that its findings are similar to those of overseas studies. Continue reading “Academic Study Shows that Private Primary Schools Perform no Better than Public Schools”

Parents Are Being Charged for ‘Free’ Education in Victoria

A report by the Victorian Auditor-General has found that parents in public schools are being charged for items and activities that should be free under state legislation and policy. It says that parent payments no longer just support free instruction, but have become essential to its provision.

The report says that there has been a “fundamental failure” in the arrangements for parent payments. The Department of Education (DET) has failed to monitor and enforce compliance to its parent payment policy and there are no consequences for schools who do not comply. Parent payment requests are not sufficiently itemised by schools and consequently it is not clear to parents what they must pay for and what they can choose to pay. The report says there is a need for greater transparency in how parent payments are requested by schools. Continue reading “Parents Are Being Charged for ‘Free’ Education in Victoria”