Gonski and Faux Reform

Now the extra base funding necessary to get us to this school resourcing standard over six years is $14.5 billion. It’s a lot of money, but I believe it is a wise investment in our children’s future and in our nation’s future. J. Gillard The Gonski Review has led to our Prime Minister announcing “the biggest changes […]

#Gonski

I blogged about the Review of Funding for Schooling last year with some hope that positive outcomes would result. Here’s the official School Funding website where you can read David Gonski and his panel’s recent findings. The headline news is the recommendation that 5 billion dollars extra funding flows into the education budget but that […]

Conclusions: Waiting for Gonski (Part 4)

Each report reaches conclusions and offers advice to the panel. The following comments are not a comprehensive analysis of these findings but my conclusions about what is the best advice. I am interested in Australians having a ‘high equity, high quality’ system and my comments are to be viewed from this perspective. The politics of […]

The Reports: Waiting for Gonski (Part 3)

cc licensed ( BY NC SD ) flickr photo shared by Oberazzi Have you read the reports commissioned by the Gonski Review of Funding for Schooling panel? I will briefly outline the ‘research questions’ each report was trying to answer or assess for the panel. My purpose is to clearly understand the scope of each […]

The Eye of the Future: Waiting for Gonski (Part 2)

All agree that the educational and political issues David Gonski and his panel must sift through are formidable. Maybe we need to simplify. If you asked an Australian person the following question, how would they likely respond? Should all Australian children be provided with a high quality education regardless of social background? The vast majority of […]

Waiting for Gonski (Part 1)

 On 31 August 2011, the Review of Funding for Schooling panel released a Paper on Commissioned Research and four research reports, seeking feedback from the general public. It is important to note that these research reports do not necessarily reflect the views of the panel.          Source   The Review of Funding for […]

Twitter, Mobile Phones and Mark Pesce

…in the last six months, a lot of people in Australia have discovered Twitter – particularly those folks who, like myself, are interested in what’s up-and-coming on the Web. Nearly all of those folks use Twitter these days, and most of them follow one another. I quickly got swept up into this madness, and am […]

Building the Windmill (or knocking it down again?)

“…the animals toiled harder than ever, thinking it well worth while to plod to and fro all day with blocks of stone if by doing so they could raise the walls another foot. Boxer would even come out at nights and work for an hour or two on his own by the light of the […]

The BOSTES Review

The Review of BOSTES (Board of Studies, Teaching and Educational Standards NSW) commissioned by the NSW Minister for Education in March 2016 has been released. Mr Piccoli has accepted all of the recommendations. This will result in a name change with BOSTES becoming the NSW Education Standards Authority or, as the report details, “the Authority“. An article […]

Nurturing Democracy: Whitlam Forum

The experience of an educational exchange to Denmark in 2011 continues to provide professional direction about what’s important in the life of a school. During my time at Viborg Katedralskole I saw how democratic values were nourished by the culture of the school and of the nation. Denmark is regularly listed as the happiest and […]

Northern Lights: The Positive Policy Example

This book is written in the belief that the nations of Scandinavia and Finland, or Nordic Europe*, do continue to provide important living proof that economically successful, socially fair and environmentally responsible policies can succeed. Northern Lights: The Positive Policy Example of Sweden, Finland, Denmark and Norway by Andrew Scott will brighten our national mood, […]

“An upper-class school”

A comment – as I negotiated customs at Sydney Airport with a large party of students on their way to visit our sister school in Korea – keeps swirling round in my mind. The official scanning bags engaged me in small-talk asking where we were headed. When I explained our excursion was to Korea to […]

The Soap Opera

 “Politics is war by other means.”         Foucault The soap opera that is Australian politics entered a new phase last night. Three years after being deposed by Julia Gillard, in a coup led by ‘faceless men’, Kevin Rudd has been returned as leader of the ALP and Prime Minister. Back then it […]

The end of the ‘Digital Education Revolution’?

“The Australian Government supports the use of new technologies in Australian schools to prepare students to learn, train and live in a digital world.” (sic)                 SOURCE It has reached the stage where the contradictions in government education policy in Australia are leaving satirists with very little to parody. In […]

A Bigger Picture

Winston Churchill famously said that ‘democracy is the worst form of government except all the others that have been tried’. One can certainly bemoan the messiness of what can only be described as a serious deficit of coherent national educational strategy, ironically, at a time when ‘Australia is falling behind’ is often heard from politicians. […]

Not starting so well…

Australia is ranked #28 in this report* I think this issue more important than most in Australian educational and community life. Any political or systemic moves to improve educational outcomes are unlikely to be as successful unless addressing early childhood issues. Any Australian educator who reads this report will note the Finnish case study on […]

The Wrong Conversations

  Fairfax has signalled that the future is online Fairfax cuts 1900 jobs   Fairfax media, publishing the Sydney Morning Herald, since 1831, is the latest industry to be forced to change, perhaps too late, in response to the digital revolution. Many suggested the writing was on the wall 15 years ago and that tardiness, […]

What can we learn from Francis Fukuyama?

The purpose of this book is to fill in some of the gaps of this historical amnesia, by giving an account of where basic political institutions came from in societies that now take them for granted. The three categories of institutions in question are the ones just described: 1. the state 2. the rule of […]