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Articles on Education

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NSW Education Minister Adrian Piccoli (left) has slashed funding for state schools. AAP/Paul Millar

Class warriors take on poor schools with education cuts

Our Liberal-run states are locked into a self-made and self-fulfilling prophesy of budgetary crisis. It seems that running a deficit budget which is at the heart of liberal Keynesian economic theory is…
An experienced lab technician is one of the most readily employable people in the R&D-intensive industries. fungiman_MD

Beware: research technicians need more than just a pulse

Earlier this year the American journalist David Plotz wrote in Slate that: America needs a lot more good engineers and scientists, more competent scientists, even more mediocre scientists. I agree that…
How will online courses deal with assessment and accreditation? Cloud computing image www.shutterstock.com.au

Credentials in the cloud: how will MOOCs deal with plagiarism?

Many are proclaiming 2012 is the year of the MOOC — Massive Open Online Course — thanks to the arrival of major players, edX, Udacity and Coursera all started by colleagues from elite American universities…
The government can’t wait any longer, it needs to make changes now to improve Indigenous education. Aboriginal Art image www.shutterstock.com

Can Indigenous education afford to wait for a real response to Gonski?

In all the discussion, media releases, press conferences and TV coverage of this week’s government response to the Gonski review, it was fascinating that the issue of Indigenous education rated such little…
We’ve had the big announcement on schools funding, but now comes the political reality. AAP Image/Alan Porritt

State stoush: the Gonski reforms and the political battle ahead

The battle over the future of Australia’s school funding arrangements has started in earnest. Outlining the government’s response to the landmark Gonski Review, Prime Minister Gillard spoke of a national…
The Gillard response to the Gonski review was a disappointment and could have been much more. AAP Image/Alan Porritt

No detail, all strategy and an opportunity lost on Gonski reforms

Yesterday the Prime Minister announced the government will introduce some of the recommendations of the Gonski Review, including a new model for funding schools. Many commentators criticised the announcement…
Prime Minister Julia Gillard speaking at the National Press Club yesterday signalled serious changes to the states’ role in education. AAP Image/Alan Porritt

The real agenda behind Gillard’s Gonski response

After the government’s response to the Gonski report on schools funding, it’s worth looking at not only what was in the announcement but what wasn’t. Prime Minister Julia Gillard offered no indication…
The Gonski response: increased funding will be tied to concrete improvement in all schools. AAP

Gonski and the PM’s education crusade: experts respond

Increased funding will be tied to concrete improvements in all schools under the government’s National Plan for School Improvement, announced on Monday in response to the Gonski Review. The government…
The PM’s response today was lacking the real boost needed for schools funding now. AAP Image/Alan Porritt

Gillard’s ‘truths’ obscure the facts on schools funding

The government has finally delivered its policy response to the Gonski report, including sweeping changes to how schools are funded and new benchmarks that aim to see Australian schools ranked in the world’s…
The government will boost schools funding today, but what’s next? Classroom image from www.shutterstock.com

Gonski is half the battle, trusting teachers is the next step

Today the Prime Minister will announce the government’s full policy response on schools funding, following the Gonski report earlier this year. The Gonski report recommended a funding boost across the…
The debate around teacher quality should be informed by research, not hunches and misinformation. Teacher image from www.shutterstock.com

A political education: hijacking the quality teaching movement

All we seem to hear about these days is failing teachers in failing schools. Those from business, government and the field of economics have all weighed in, criticising teachers, teacher educators and…
Schools fear of litigation could be driving bans on “risky” playground activities - like cartwheeling. Cartwheel image from www.shutterstock.com

Banning cartwheels: school litigation fears are unfounded

A few schools have hit the headlines recently for banning traditional playground activities like cartwheels, handstands, ball games and even high fives. Parents are rightly objecting to the bans, and pointing…
The government needs to respond to the Gonski report on schools funding and start improving student outcomes. Schools image from www.shutterstock.com

Six steps the government needs to take on Gonski

It’s been six long months since the Gonski panel made its recommendations on schools funding, but in the next few weeks the federal government will finally respond and release the details of its school…
La Trobe’s Vice-Chancellor John Dewar defends his cuts to the humanities program. ABC News

Vice-Chancellor: La Trobe protestors abused freedom of speech

On Sunday, La Trobe University held its most successful Open Day ever, with more than 19,000 visitors. But the day was disrupted by student protests against recently announced changes to our Faculty of…
Despite online courses available for free, university students still want the experience of bricks and mortar campuses. University campus image from www.shutterstock.com

MOOCs will mean the death of universities? Not likely

MOOCs, or Massive Open Online Courses, are gaining a lot of attention. Some commentators believe that these free internet-delivered courses are the future of university education. Others meanwhile argue…
The PM should look to her successes in education and build on them by adopting the Gonski recommendations. AAP Image/Julian Smith

Stop playing on schools funding fears and get on with Gonski

Howʼs this for a radical thought to start the week - a robust contest of ideas around how we educate Australian students to an internationally competitive standard. Too quixotic? Perhaps, but it would…
Schools funding is back in the headlines, but what’s needed is a wider debate about equality. AAP Image/Paul Miller

Gonski, inequality and schools funding: what the debate needs right now

Imagine a field of wheat which has been watered unequally. Some parts will grow to their potential, but some won’t. In the end, it’s bad for the whole field’s productivity. Economist James Galbraith’s…
The pressure on academics is becoming too much, there needs to be cultural change. Stressed image from www.shutterstock.com

Cracks in the ivory tower: is academia’s culture sustainable?

The pressure is on. More and more universities and academics are working in a culture that is untenable and cracks in the ivory tower have already begun to appear. The work environment is now characterised…
The debate on schools funding has taken a strange turn with both sides racing to increase funding to private schools. AAP Image/Alan Porritt

Gillard and Abbott’s ‘race to the top’ to support private schools

In a political echo of the unseemly bi-partisan “race to the bottom” over asylum seekers, we now have a “race to the top” with the prime minister and opposition leader vying to offer the most support to…

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