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Schools policy in 2018: reflecting on the big events and the new developments

Bronwyn Hinz writes in The Conversation (21.12.18) that 2018 was a ‘mixed bag’ for schooling policy in Australia, with new ministers, a new organisation and auspicious anniversaries. As the author notes, it’s worth reflecting on the year that’s been and what educationalists can expect in 2019.

‘Queensland is steadily closing gaps in educational outcomes between Indigenous and non-Indigenous students.

‘It has also launched a new strategic plan. Notably, this includes early childhood education and post-school education, and additional measures for students in regional and rural areas, and students with disabilities. This is part of a cohesive approach to lifting and sustaining learning outcomes for all students.

‘… The March release of the Gonski 2.0 report was an early highlight. This review was tasked with identifying the school and classroom factors that can make the biggest, sustained difference to educational achievement. This includes what funding should be spent on, rather than structural issues like funding allocations.

‘Gonski 2.0 advocated for a student-centred schooling system based on learning growth over time. Key recommendations focused on enhancing student voice, and better valuing of and support for teachers and school leaders, including providing them with the time and tools (including finer grain data, and data beyond NAPLAN) to focus on teaching and educational leadership, so they’re not swamped by administrative compliance.’

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