ACT Chamber of Commerce Needs Education

It seems that the ACT Chamber of Commerce does not want to retain a highly-skilled workforce in Canberra. Its proposal to cut expenditure on government schools threatens to return ACT education to the dark ages of lower school participation rates and Year 12 completion.

Continue reading “ACT Chamber of Commerce Needs Education”

Disadvantaged Schools Have Fewer Educational Resources than Advantaged Schools

Disadvantaged schools in Australia have far fewer educational resources than advantaged schools. They experience more teacher shortages, and more shortages or inadequacy of educational materials and physical infrastructure than advantaged schools. These are key findings of an analysis by Save Our Schools of data presented in a supplementary report by the OECD on results from the 2012 Programme for International Student Assessment. Continue reading “Disadvantaged Schools Have Fewer Educational Resources than Advantaged Schools”

Islamic School Refused Registration

A proposed new Islamic school in Canberra has been refused provisional registration by the ACT Minister for Education, Joy Burch, because it has failed to meet legislative requirements for new schools. This decision means that the school cannot open as proposed on 6 February 2014 and it will have to submit another application for provisional registration if it wishes to proceed.

A damning report by a panel appointed by the Minister to review the application for provisional registration by the At-Taqwa Islamic School found that the school would not be financially viable, lacked a qualified principal and teachers, and did not have an adequate curriculum or student safety and welfare support processes.

Continue reading “Islamic School Refused Registration”

Kevin Donnelly – The “Cory Bernadi” of Education Policy

Kevin Donnelly has been a tireless campaigner against the Gonski report, using a variety of spurious arguments. But a recent opinion piece in The Australian breaks new ground, because he has explicitly linked educational inequalities in Australia to genetic differences in cognitive ability. Continue reading “Kevin Donnelly – The “Cory Bernadi” of Education Policy”

The Folly of ACT School Closures Revealed

Education Minister Joy Burch has exposed the folly of the 2006 school closures as an expensive and short-sighted mistake. The loss of spare capacity has now seen new classrooms built in schools only kilometres from closed schools, at a cost of tens of millions of dollars.

Continue reading “The Folly of ACT School Closures Revealed”

Call For Senate Inquiry into the National Curriculum

Save Our Schools today called for a Senate inquiry into the national curriculum. SOS National Convenor, Trevor Cobbold, said that the inquiry established by the Federal Minister for Education, Christopher Pyne, last week is clearly biased. Continue reading “Call For Senate Inquiry into the National Curriculum”

Unwarranted Speculation by Melbourne University Study

The finding by a Melbourne University study that Catholic (and other private) school students have higher lifetime earnings than public school students is not surprising. Lifetime earnings are influenced by education results which in turn are strongly influenced by socio-economic status (SES) and Catholic schools enrol proportionately more high SES students and fewer low SES students than public schools. Continue reading “Unwarranted Speculation by Melbourne University Study”

PISA Results Show that Competition is not the Answer to Improving School Performance

International test results published last month are forcing the OECD to reconsider their long-held faith in the efficacy of competition to improve school outcomes. The results provide strong evidence that competition between schools and the presence of private schools does not lead to higher student achievement. The results also show that more competition tends to lead to greater social segregation between schools and greater inequity in learning opportunities. Continue reading “PISA Results Show that Competition is not the Answer to Improving School Performance”

Gonski Documents Expunged from the Public Record

The Coalition Government has removed all documents from the Gonski Review of Funding for Schooling from the website of the Federal Department of Education and also removed all documents relating to the Better Schools funding plan introduced by the Labor Government. It is extraordinary that the Gonski report and other documents relating to the most significant review of school funding in Australia in the last 40 years have been expunged from the public record. Continue reading “Gonski Documents Expunged from the Public Record”