The Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership (AITSL) is working with stakeholders to develop an Australian Teacher Performance and Development Framework. The Framework will be underpinned by the National Professional Standards for Teachers which describe what teachers should know and be able to do at each career stage. A draft Framework has been developed informed by research, mapping and analysis of existing practices across Australia and national and international experts in the field. This is now the subject of national consultation with the profession. See AITSL statement April 2012. See also article in The Australian and article in The Sydney Morning Herald, both 27 April 2012.
The Standing Council on School Education and Early Childhood (SCSEEC) met on Friday 20 April 2012 in Perth. See Communiqué. Ministers agreed to work together to streamline regulations over the reporting requirements of non-government schools, particularly around financial and governance decisions. Ministers reaffirmed their opposition to the publication of NAPLAN league tables as counterproductive and harmful to the educational purposes of schooling. Ministers endorsed the new national approach to certifying Highly Accomplished and Lead Teachers, which will be implemented from next year. Ministers agreed to continue with work to raise awareness of the issue of bullying with a $1.62 million investment over the next three years. Ministers reaffirmed their commitment to the COAG target of ensuring all indigenous four-year-old children in remote communities have access to early childhood education by 2013. See also statement from Australian Minister for School Education, Peter Garrett, 20 April 2012.
Up to 22 Tasmanian Government schools will have the opportunity to be part of the national Empowering Local Schools initiative. See transcript of interview 25 April 2012 with Australian Minister for School Education, Peter Garrett. More than 30 Catholic and independent schools in Western Australia will also receive funding under the initiative. For discussion about the funding of public schools in Western Australia see article in The West Australian and report on ABC News, both 23 April 2012. For coverage of the initiative in South Australia see statement 26 April 2012 from Peter Garrett and Grace Portolesi, South Australian Government Minister for Education and Child Development.
Australian Minister for School Education, Peter Garrett, has announced a further four years' funding for the Asia Education Foundation (AEF), which aims to equip young Australians with knowledge, skills and understandings of the countries and cultures of Asia. He has also hosted a discussion on Asian literacy with business leaders, focusing on how Government and business can work together to increase awareness of Asian culture and the study of Asian languages in Australian schools.
An article in the Telegraph 21 April 2012 reports the existence of 235 vacancies in public school classrooms in western Sydney and rural parts of NSW.
Musica Viva offers a range of education programs for students of all ages. Its Live Performance Plus program for years K–8 supports teachers to bring music to the classroom regardless of their level of music teaching. It includes an accredited professional development course; a resource kit for teachers with Musica Viva's new interactive resources for digital classrooms (find out more); and a school visit by an experienced musical ensemble (check availability by region). Book online or call 1300 663 608 for more information.
Victorian Education Minister, Martin Dixon, has opened the new Quantum Victoria physical sciences centre in Melbourne's northern suburbs. Quantum Victoria is the sixth and final of the Victorian Government's specialised science education centres, designed to engage students in science. See also article in Curriculum Leadership 2 September 2011.
The Victorian Law Reform Commission's report on Sex offenders registration has been tabled in the State Parliament by the Attorney-General. It contains 79 recommendations to make the scheme more effective in protecting children from sexual abuse. One of the recommendations is to remove from the register 'sexters', young people who have sent sexually explicit text messages. See article in The Age 22 April 2012.
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