11 June 2019

Dan Tehan’s big homework list

Here’s how the federal Education Minister can make a real difference over the next three years.

6 May 2019

Disciplined approach will improve school results

Contrary to public perceptions of chalk-laden blackboards and change-resistant teachers, our schools are awash with innovation. What Australia needs now is more disciplined innovation – greater investment in small-scale trials and rigorous evaluations to help inform teaching practice across the nation.

26 October 2018

Tassie maths scores don’t add up

Australia focuses heavily on school students’ achievement at a point in time. But the sad reality is that achievement tells us a lot about real estate values, and little about how to improve the school system. Student progress (that is, student growth) gives a better indication of how much a student learns during their time in the classroom.

23 October 2018

Queensland’s rise to top education performer could provide a model for the country

Ten years ago, nobody would have believed that other states should be learning from Queensland’s school education system. When the very first 2008 NAPLAN results were published, Queensland was the lowest achieving state in the country. But a lot has changed.

22 October 2018

ACT students are falling behind

Australia focuses heavily on school students’ achievement at a point in time. But the sad reality is that achievement tells us a lot about real estate values, and less about how to improve the school system. Student progress (i.e. student growth) gives a better indication of how much a student learns during their time in the classroom.

27 June 2018

Why an adaptive education system relies on our most expert teachers

Australian school education system faces three major challenges: improving student learning in core academic areas; better preparing young people for adult life; and closing the gap between educational have and have-nots. A key step to tackling all these challenges at once is to make better use of our most expert teachers.

30 March 2018

Building adaptive excellence

Australia’s education policy makers need a new model of system leadership. To create a more adaptive education system, we must bring three pieces together: an explicit focus on inputs (what is done), an equal focus on outcomes (what is measured), and a systematic learning process to decide what to do differently next time.

12 February 2018

Why the Commonwealth should resist meddling in schools

Australia’s education debate is shifting at last, from how much money governments should spend on schools to how best to spend the money for the benefit of students. The Grattan Institute’s new report, The Commonwealth’s role in improving schools, examines what the Commonwealth should do if it really wants to boost student outcomes.

26 November 2017

How to achieve excellence in Australian schools

Australia’s school education system is not fit for purpose, and we need to rethink the way we teach students, support teachers and run schools. The “Review to Achieve Excellence in Australian Schools”, led by David Gonski and due to report next March, offers a reform opportunity that must be seized.

17 March 2017

Poor behaviour in class is not acceptable but zero tolerance is not the answer

The promise of “zero tolerance” from federal education minister Simon Birmingham is well meaning but can do more damage than good. Poor behaviour in class is not acceptable but zero tolerance is not the answer.