Wednesday, 14 August 2019

A view from a Finnish expert

Teachers and principals are advanced professionals akin to their peers in Finland, Singapore, or any other country. 

But, as I have noticed, and what was well reported in recent ABC reportage, this world-class educational excellence is very unevenly distributed around this country and its communities.

Frankly speaking, "Rich school, poor school: Australia's great education divide" is a depressing read. 

Having world-class schools is not the same as having a high-performing school system. 

David Gonski's Review Panel in its 2011 report got it to the point: 

"Funding for schooling must not be seen simply as a financial matter. Rather, it is about investing to strengthen and secure Australia's future. Investment and high expectations must go hand in hand. Every school must be appropriately resourced to support every child and every teacher must expect the most from every child." 

In other words, we need to fix current inequalities in and out of schools before educational excellence can truly be achieved.

It is that simple. The evidence is clear and so should be the road ahead.

Pasi Sahlberg is professor of educational policy and deputy director at the Gonski Institute for Education in the School of Education at the University of New South Wales.

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