New controversy about the influence of Pearson in education here in Australia.
Private companies are gaining unprecedented access to students' personal and academic data, drafting NAPLAN questions and producing teaching and learning materials, prompting fears that businesses are dictating the focus of public education policy.
More than 90 per cent of public school teachers and principals are concerned about the privatisation of public education, including the ethics of private companies having access to student data, a new study of 2200 educators, including 1100 in NSW, has revealed.
A key area of privatisation in Australian education is the standardised NAPLAN tests, administered to students in year 3, 5, 7 and 9 at public and non-government schools, according to the report, which was commissioned by the NSW Teachers Federation and released on Tuesday.
Almost all elements of the NAPLAN tests have been contracted out to private companies such as multibillion global education provider Pearson, UNSW Global and British-based National Foundation of Educational Research, including the development of test questions, reporting on results and the final national performance analyses.