Par­ents call for teach­ing stan­dard


THE state’s peak par­ent body says min­i­mum en­try scores for teach­ing cour­ses must be con­sid­ered, as the Aus­tralian Ed­u­ca­tion Union ramps up pres­sure on the Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment to take ac­tion.

The union called on new Ed­u­ca­tion Min­is­ter Si­mon Birm­ing­ham to fix de­clin­ing stan­dards, af­ter the Aus­tralian In­sti­tute for Teach­ing and School Lead­er­ship backed NSW’s new pol­icy re­quir­ing Year 12s to achieve scores of 80/100 in three sub­jects.

Mr Birm­ing­ham’s pre­de­ces­sor Christo­pher Pyne in­tro­duced a range of re­forms, in­clud­ing com­pul­sory lit­er­acy and nu­mer­acy tests for stu­dent teach­ers, but baulked at set­ting a min­i­mum univer­sity en­trance rank (ATAR). Cut-off ATARs are set by univer­si­ties.

The SA As­so­ci­a­tion of State School Or­gan­i­sa­tions wants dis­cus­sion of min­i­mum scores back on the ta­ble, along with other mea­sures such as in­ter­views and en­try tests.

AEU fed­eral pres­i­dent Cor­rena Haythorpe said the “fine print” of the latest agree­ment be­tween state and fed­eral ed­u­ca­tion min­is­ters showed “univer­si­ties will still ef­fec­tively be al­lowed to set their own en­try stan­dards”.

Mr Birm­ing­ham said the union, by fo­cus­ing on aca­demic re­sults, was “fail­ing to ac­knowl­edge the im­por­tance of many other as­pects which con­trib­ute to whether or not some­one is a suc­cess­ful teacher”. He said the Com­mon­wealth and states had agreed to im­proved se­lec­tion re­quire­ments and reac­cred­i­ta­tion of all teacher cour­ses, as well as lit­er­acy and nu­mer­acy tests. PAGE 19: CRUNCH TIME FOR YEAR 12

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