I’ve been published on the ABC today giving my thoughts on the current state of play of education reform in Australia.
Here is an excerpt:
I’m not saying we shouldn’t aim to improve teaching and learning in schools. Of course we should; any profession worth its salt seeks to continually improve its impact.
But what I am saying is that whilst governments may say this is their aim, many of their actions only serve to undermine teaching and learning in our schools.
For example, the Federal Government is intent on paying the best teachers based on their performance. But by it’s own definition only 10% of teachers would pass muster, and there would – of course – be a reliance on standardized test scores to prove one teacher’s worth over another.
Forgetting for a moment that implementing Performance Related Pay in teaching is questionable at best, no single move could do more to destroy the fabric of education than this.
Only the most egocentric teacher would believe that her students’ performance was solely down to her. Schools rely on a sense of collegiality but introducing performance related pay would compromise this value.
I know there are good and bad teachers, just as there are good and bad politicians. But pitting politicians against each other hasn’t raised standards of governance, so why would we think it’s the answer to raising standards of education?