In just under a month, NSW goes to the polls. There is certainly a move for change but how this ultimately impacts on our work is still uncertain.
Making an informed decision means understanding the implications of Labor, the Coalition and the Greens’ education policy.
The potential impact of a Greens policy means that funding of non-government schools would be dramatically reduced. Religious schools are not exempt from anti-discrimination laws but they are entitled to the democratic right and freedom to support a particular ethos.
For me, these policies are more divisive than unifying – they are designed to appease rather than addressing the complex issues every school and system faces in improving the quality of learning and teaching.
Marc Prensky is spot on when he says governments spend a whole lot of money trying to fix the system instead of education.
Good educational policy does not favour one system over another and therefore one child’s learning over another. What we want is an education policy that values diversity and innovation while promoting excellence and equity.
In his occasional address at the University of Southern Queensland last year, Professor Stephen Dinham said ‘the biggest equity issue in Australian education today isn’t computers, new buildings or equipment. It’s each student having quality teachers and quality teaching in schools.’
There should be no differentiation in teacher quality within schools or across suburbs. Consider this when you vote on March the 26th because it’s not good policy if it doesn’t benefit every student.