The following is a summary of a submission to the
Independent Inquiry on the Teaching Profession in NSW Public Schools. The full
submission can be downloaded below.
The NSW public education system has undergone a huge expansion
in bureaucracy since 2003. There was a massive increase in administrative staff
in schools and in central and regional offices that is many times greater than the
increase in students. Yet, there was only a very small increase in inflation-adjusted
funding per student despite a large increase in disadvantaged students. Expanding
the bureaucracy was prioritised over funding classroom learning and support. As
one former principal told Save Our Schools, it reflects an “increase in roles
orchestrating compliance not teaching, learning and curriculum”.
Continue reading “Funding, Enrolments and Staffing in NSW Public Schools”
In his recently published memoirs, Malcolm Turnbull thoroughly exposes the hypocrisy of Catholic education authorities in diverting taxpayer funding intended for poor schools to subsidise rich inner-city schools. In doing so, he exposed his own hypocrisy by allowing them to continue to do so under his Gonski 2.0 funding model.
Continue reading “Turnbull Exposes Rorting of School Funding by Catholic Church”
I felt too many of the Church leaders were more interested in defending their system and resisting accountability than in fulfilling Jesus’ mission to the poor.
The US public school advocacy organisation Public Funds, Public Schools has published a review of recent studies of vouchers in the US. The studies show that private school vouchers have not improved student achievement and have multiple negative effects including exacerbating social segregation in schools. The findings on student achievement are reproduced below. The full review is available here.
Continue reading “Private School Vouchers Don’t Improve Student Achievement”
Many Year 10 students in Australia are being taught key subjects by unqualified teachers according to a major new study. It found that 15.5% of Year 10 classes are being taught by teachers out of their field of expertise. Twenty per cent of mathematics classes and 21% of English classes are taught out-of-field. The study found that 12.5% of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) classes are being taught out-of-field. This is likely an under-estimate because of inadequate data on science teaching.
Continue reading “Too Many Classes are Taught by Out-of-Field Teachers”
There is extensive research evidence of the impact of family background
on student results. Many studies from the United
States, the United
Kingdom, the OECD and Australia also show
a school socio-economic composition (SEC) effect whereby students attending schools
with a high concentration of students from poor families tend to have lower
results than students from similar backgrounds attending schools with higher
proportions of students from well-off backgrounds.
Continue reading “New Study Shows that the Social Composition of Schools Strongly Influences School Results”
The following letter was published in the Washington Post yesterday. It has particular relevance because of similar claims from private schools in Australia for a taxpayer bailout.
I was disappointed to learn from the
May 6 Metro article “D.C. prep schools keep
federal loans” that many of the area’s private schools are being
bailed out with taxpayer money. Sidwell Friends School, with only about 1,100
students, received $5 million in bailout money while charging $45,000 in
tuition. If elite private schools cannot keep themselves afloat with that kind
of revenue coming in, then those institutions deserve to go belly up and their
students sent to D.C.-area public schools, where they can get a comparable, if
not superior, education.
These private schools should not be
allowed to be bailed out when our public schools are scrambling to redo their
budgets and our underpaid public school teachers face potential furloughs.
Meanwhile, the largest school district in our area, Fairfax County Public Schools, educates more
than 188,000 students and employs more than 24,000 people. FCPS and other
D.C.-area public schools graduate some of the best talent in the world, while
charging not a cent in tuition.
Districts such as FCPS are mainstays
of the local economy that provide priceless value to local communities through
education and support. Small, endowment-rich private schools have no business
receiving our taxpayer dollars while public school systems around the nation
get left behind.
In a ground-breaking decision
last week, the US Court
of Appeals ruled that the US Constitution “provides a fundamental right to
a basic minimum education” for all students and that the “Supreme Court has
recognized that basic literacy is foundational to our political process and
society”. The decision makes it clear that public education has a critical role
in providing the right to a basic education.
Continue reading “US Court Rules a Fundamental Right to Education”
The following is the conclusion of a Working Paper published by Save Our Schools on the sabotage of the Gonski funding model by the Coalition Government. The paper can be downloaded below.
Comments on the paper are invited. Notification of issues not covered and mistakes of fact, analysis and interpretation will be appreciated. Please excuse any remaining typos and repetitions. Comments can be sent to the Save Our Schools email address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Continue reading “The Coalition Govt Sabotaged the Gonski Funding Model”
A new study published in the Journal
of Public Economics found that increased expenditure on schools in low-spending
school districts led to significant improvements in student achievement and high
school graduation. It adds to the large number of research studies showing that
money matters in education.
Continue reading “Increased Spending Improves School Results”
Over half of all secondary school teachers in Australia report that they have too much administrative work which takes away time for preparing for classes and is a major source of stress. A quarter of teachers say they experience a lot of stress at school. These are amongst the highest percentages in the OECD. They are significant factors behind teachers leaving the profession. These are significant factors behind teachers leaving the profession.
Australian teachers also have less professional autonomy over classroom content and assessment than in other OECD countries, but there is more professional collaboration in Australian schools. However, a majority of teachers do not believe their profession is valued by society.
These are key results from the OECD Teaching and Learning International Survey (TALIS), an international survey of school teachers, school leaders and the learning environment in schools released this month. The report provides important insights into the state of the teaching profession in Australia and other countries.
Continue reading “Teachers Say There is Too Much Administrative Work & Stress in Schools”