Sunday, 29 December 2019

Drug deaths increase in rural Australia.

More evidence of government neglect of rural Australia. It's not just education.....

Researchers at the University of New England have put together a list of actions policy-makers can take to get ahead of the trend.

Every year between 200,000 and 500,000 people go without help for drug and alcohol use, Rural criminology senior lecturer Dr Katinka van de Ven said.

"It comes down to policy, social, physical and economic conditions, one of the things that became apparent was the lack of accessibility to drug and alcohol treatment programs so people have to travel," she said.

Friday, 27 December 2019

More Christian schools

"Christian school enrolments have soared over the past five years, ... the rising influence of identity politics in many schools is alienating families with traditional values."

Story in the Australian ( of course)

The truth is....Christian schools grow courtesy of huge increases in public subsidy under Pentecostals running our country. Real funding for public schools cut by $17 per student (-0.2%) while funding for Catholics increased by $1,420 per student (18.4%) and Independent schools by $1,318 (20.9%)

Some interesting ideas

The Classroom Experiment' begins on BBC2 on Monday 27 September

Something we can all learn from: how to improve teaching techniques

* Stop students putting their hands up to ask questions – it's the same ones doing it all the time. Instead introduce a random method of choosing which pupil answers the question, such as lollipop sticks, and thus engage the whole class.

* Use traffic-light cups in order to assess quickly and easily how much your students understand your lesson. If several desks are displaying a red cup, gather all those students around to help them at the same time.

* Mini-whiteboards, on which the whole class simultaneously writes down the answer to a question, are a quick way of gauging whether the class as a whole is getting your lesson. This method also satisfies the high-achievers who would normally stick their hands up.

* A short burst of physical exercise at the start of the school day will do wonders for students' alertness and motivation. As any gym addict or jogger will tell you, it's all about the chemicals released into the brain.

* Ditch the obsession with grades, so that pupils can concentrate instead on the comments that the teacher has written on written classwork.

* Allow students to assess the teachers' teaching – they are the ones at the sharp end, after all. Letting pupils have a say is empowering and, if handled constructively, is highly enlightening.

Tuesday, 24 December 2019

Bloody John Howard....

"In 1996 about one in 12.5 students transferred from the public to the private school system for high school, compared with one in 10 last year." The Howard govt effectively introduced a supply driven funding system privileging private schools. 
Funding has continued to privilege private schools at the expense of students with the greatest needs. "Between the 2007-08 and 2016-17 financial years, government funding per public school student increased 38.7 %...Government funding per non-government school student grew 61%"
The opportunity to turn this around was destroyed by the Abbott, Turnbull, Morrison govts when they tore up the Gonski funding reforms introduced in 2013 denying public schools billions of dollars.
Despite this, public schools continue to perform as well, if not better, than private schools. Imagine how much more could be achieved if public schools received the funding our students actually need and deserve.

Oh....Merry Christmas!

Friday, 20 December 2019

From Jane Caro

Dear Australian public schools, thanku 4 punching above ur weight 4 yet another year. Thanku 4 ignoring the rank hostility our federal govt has demonstrated to you in both principle & reality. Thank you for doing your best for the kids you teach regardless of govt disdain.

Thursday, 12 December 2019

Water theft

The Tamborine Mountain state school has run out of water, even as water miners in the Gold Coast hinterland are sending millions of litres to commercial bottling operations.

Trucks sent by the Queensland government carrying emergency supplies to the school, including Mount Tamborine bottled water, have been passing trucks heading in the opposite direction taking local water to bottling plants for beverage giants such as Coca-Cola.

The school remains open but parents have been advised by teachers to consider keeping their children at home.

Water miners in the Mount Tamborine area supply roughly 130m litres of water each year to commercial bottling operations. Now the local bores are running dry.

Wednesday, 11 December 2019


75% Aust children attend public schools receive 20% of federal funding, whilst the 25% of Aust children who attend private schools receive 80%.  Private students receive approx $1000 more.  Inequity.

Tuesday, 10 December 2019

Unfucking believable!

From today's AGE ( Tehan has an idea....)

Peter Goss, school education program director at the Grattan Institute, said learning progressions were a tool to help teachers provide targeted instruction for students.

"In today's world, too many schools are having to create their own understanding of learning progressions. That's massively inefficient and probably also lower quality," he said.

"[It's much better] to develop national learning progressions, offer them to schools along with resources that can help teachers use the learning progressions in practice."

Dr Goss warned the method was "no panacea" and needed to be implemented properly and carefully otherwise they would just add to teachers' workloads.

This is from the idiots that scrapped the National Curriculum years ago.

Monday, 9 December 2019

Another Edn Minister meeting wasted?

Australia could transform its teaching workforce for $620 per student p.a., with a structured career path for expert teachers to support other teachers - Rec. 16 in #Gonski 2.0.

This is what Ed ministers should discuss in Alice Springs!


Residents will lose the right to object to the building of new private schools under planning laws designed to "fast-track" the development of the Catholic and independent sectors.

Saturday, 7 December 2019

Inequity 2

The media has been flooded with stories since the PISA results were released but I don’t remember anyone talking about our alarming rise in inequality. Yet we demand radical change if a middle-class child gets stressed about their Australian Tertiary Admission Rank score. We are too willing to ignore equity problems in our system. We are much happier pretending that our problems are about higher order thinking and differentiation. The evidence does not support this. In fact, the ­opposite is true.

Ben Jensen is chief executive of Learning First, an education research consultancy.


“Those schools are able to choose their students, the minute a kid acts up, they can be suspended or expelled. It is the ability of schools to select their students that creates inequity which is one of the structural weaknesses of Australian education,” @PiccoliMp

Funding farce continues

The federal government has knocked back a bipartisan call for increased scrutiny of school funding, rejecting the push amid rising alarm about the decline in Australian students' academic results.

Earlier this year, a Coalition-dominated parliamentary committee criticised the "inadequate" administration of tens of billions of dollars in federal funds and said the money was not being distributed in a transparent and accountable way. The committee suggested it was difficult to know if the funding was ultimately going to students based on need.

Friday, 6 December 2019

Brilliant idea! NOT!

The Department of Education will be merged with the Department of Employment, Skills, Small and Family Business as part of an extraordinary overhaul of Australia’s public service announced by Prime Minister Scott Morrison today.

The dramatic consolidation, approved by the Governor-General this morning and due to take effect on February 1 2020, includes clashing the number of government departments from 18 to 14 to “ensure that Australians rely on are delivered more efficiently and effectively”.

However, Opposition Leader Anthony Albanese expressed concern over the government's move.

"This is about centralising power," Albanese told reporters today.

"This prime minister has been making cuts to the public service continuously since they were elected in 2013."

Australian Greens Senator and Education Spokesperson, Dr Mehreen Faruqi called the proposed merger of the Department of Education with Skills and Employment a “huge mistake”.

“Merging the departments of education and employment is a short-sighted decision that highlights the Government’s narrow, neoliberal idea of education,” Senator Faruqi said.

“Education is a public good essential to building a socially and economically just society, not just an avenue to employment or profit – it demands a standalone focus.”

Senator Faruqi said the existing merger of skills with the employment department has “undermined lifelong education”.

“This decision takes us further down this path and is a huge mistake,” she said.

“Mergers inevitably result in huge amounts of money wasted on consultants and some new letterheads while nothing is done to properly fund public schools or save TAFE”.

Berwick Lodge Primary School principal Henry Grossek, who has been an educator for 50 years, said the amalgamation is "not in the best interests of education" and "devalues one of the most important portfolios that the government has".

"This is a downgrading of the importance of education at a time when Minister Tehan is publicly airing concerns over the lowering of Australia's PISA results," Grossek told The Educator.

"In a government that's working well, a Minister talking to a Minister is a much more reliable communication network than just one Minister talking to many other bureaucrats".