Dum­mies get­ting into uni

Sunday Tasmanian - - News - SHAUN McMANUS

AS­PIR­ING teach­ers in Vic­to­ria are be­ing ac­cepted into uni­ver­sity teach­ing cour­ses de­spite shock­ing aca­demic re­sults of their own.

One stu­dent with an Aus­tralian Ter­tiary Ad­mis­sion Rank (ATAR) of just 17.9 out of a pos­si­ble 99.95 se­cured a place in an ini­tial teach­ing course.

The rank is al­most 50 points be­low a min­i­mum bench­mark the state gov­ern­ment set to raise teach­ing stan­dards.

The wor­ry­ing data, ob­tained has prompted Vic­to­rian Ed­u­ca­tion Min­is­ter James Mer­lino to or­der an im­me­di­ate in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

“I will not stand for uni­ver­si­ties who are at­tempt­ing to un­der­cut or by­pass our re­forms and min­i­mum ATAR stan­dards,” he said.

He warned uni­ver­si­ties that didn’t com­ply could lose ac­cred­i­ta­tion to teach fu­ture ed­u­ca­tors.

Fed­eral Ed­u­ca­tion and Train­ing Min­is­ter Si­mon Birm­ing­ham has writ­ten to Mr Mer­lino, call­ing on him to ex­plain why Vic­to­ria is the worst-per­form­ing state.

Fig­ures re­leased through Se­nate Es­ti­mates re­veal Vic­to­ria Uni­ver­sity ad­mit­ted stu­dents with the low­est scores in Aus­tralia to an Ini­tial Teach­ing Ed­u­ca­tion course, with ATARs of only 17.9, 19.8 and 21.3. PRAC­TICE made per­fect for a host of Tas­ma­nian music’s ris­ing stars yes­ter­day as they joined forces with the Tas­ma­nian Sym­phony Orches­tra.

The an­nual TSO Big Re­hearsal en­ables tal­ented young mu­si­cians from the Tas­ma­nian Youth Orches­tra to team up with a TSO player for a full day of re­hearsal.

It was held at the Friends’ School yes­ter­day.

TSO trom­bon­ist David Robins said the or­ches­tras spent the day work­ing through a num­ber of pieces.

“It’s a day where the TSO and the TYO come to­gether and they get to ex­pe­ri­ence ba­si­cally a work­ing day for the orches­tra,” Mr Robins said. “At the end of the af­ter­noon, there’s a per­for­mance for the par­ents of the mem­bers of the TYO.”

Mr Robins said the Big Re­hearsal went “fan­tas­ti­cally well”.

“There was a great au­di­ence and great sup­port from fam­ily and friends for TYO mem­bers and they loved the ex­pe­ri­ence, it’s a great op­por­tu­nity for them to see what we do,” he said.

“To come in and sit with us and work through reper­toire like that I think is ex­traor­di­nar­ily valu­able for them.”

TYO trom­bon­ist Toby Sward, 16, was par­tic­i­pat­ing in the Big Re­hearsal for the sec­ond time.

“It’s a re­ally good op­por­tu­nity to play with pro­fes­sional play­ers,” Toby said.

“We get to sit next to them and learn from them, lis­ten to them, take feed­back from them … we can hear them play and we can adapt to the way they play.”

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