The Director of the School Education Program at the Grattan Institute, Ben Jensen, has written in The Australian on Australia’s need for Asian language skill ‘in an Asia-led world’. See article, 23 March 2011.
The South Australian Government has launched a campaign called Teaching is Inspiring to highlight the value of the teaching profession to the broader community, as well as to plan for the future needs of the teaching workforce. See statement 19 March 2011 by South Australian Education Minister, Jay Weatherill, and article in The Advertiser (Adelaide Now), also 19 March 2011.
Cyber Safety is an interactive online resource to help Tasmanian public schools tackle bullying and promote cyber safety. It has been trialled successfully in six schools and will now be introduced across Tasmania. See statement by Minister for Education and Skills, Lin Thorp, 23 March 2011.
A group of parents in Victoria has appealed for changes to the way that Religious Education is delivered in primary schools. Their appeal, addressed to the Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commission, calls for RE to be delivered on an opt-in rather than out-out basis, and also calls for ‘a proper secular alternative’ to RE, according to an article in The Age, 24 March 2011.
Problems in US students’ average performance on international tests can be attributed to substantial areas of poverty in the country, according to Emeritus Professor Stephen Krashen. In a recent series of posts on the Schools matter blog he contests a range of alternative explanations, which attribute student performance to teachers and schools of education, national decline, lack of a national education program, and parents. See posts 28 February, 10 March, 13 March and second post 13 March 2011.
The International Business Times has reported on a pilot program for the use of social media in NSW schools. See article, 17 March 2011. See also article in the Sydney Morning Herald, 21 March 2011, which looks at students’ use of Facebook, and the issues raised for schools.