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PISA2018-1.1 Education Policy

In this essay I return to themes addressed previously, especially in Australian Education Policy 2019 and associated essays, particularly The School Education Bunfight or how Populism, Ideology and Political Cowardice distorts Policy.

I particular drew attention to disparities in funding between public and independent schools and the impact of socioeconomic background on educational achievement. These are issues of equity, an issue addressed in every PISA report since 2000.                                               

I also addressed the utility of standardised tests such as NAPLAN introduced by the Gillard Government, with its consequential overwhelming focus in teaching on core subjects of literacy and numeracy. Through the link of results  to the MySchool website together with funding and the socioeconomic background of their enrolments it was intended to provide accountability allowing comparison of the performance of similar schools. Instead the site served to rank schools.

I considered the assertion that investment in education reduces poverty and the impact of education on economic growth. Poverty is reduced through economic policies!

Last, I emphasised the importance of early childhood intervention, and the concentration of policies on the school years. Opinions about effective schooling, especially effective teaching and learning frequently ignore evidence and in Australia and some other countries focus unproductively on formal qualifications of teachers whilst ignoring their role as learning facilitators; teachers are trusted in the best education systems!