Shadow Minister for Education, Nick Wakeling
Daniel Andrews and James Merlino’s announcement today of a minimum ATAR for teaching courses is a good first step in lifting teacher quality, but will do little to improve student outcomes or teaching standards.
Daniel Andrews must recognise that a high ATAR score alone will not result in smarter teachers in the classroom.
While ATARs are important, universities use a range of tools to select their teacher candidates, including interviews, portfolios and written applications.
Furthermore, a minimum ATAR does nothing to help the teachers already in schools who are struggling to improve student learning.
Teachers need better support as they enter the classroom and more valuable professional development focussed on improving their skills throughout their careers so they can constantly improve and innovate.
It seems that it is not good enough for teachers just to teach under Daniel Andrews and James Merlino, they need to parent too.
Daniel Andrews and James Merlino do not care that teachers are overburdened and stressed by a crowded curriculum that is always changing and growing, forcing them to teach ideological programs like Safe Schools and Respectful Relationships.
With increased federal and state funding going into education each year, the latest NAPLAN results show that this has had little impact on the literacy and numeracy standards of Victorian students.
Daniel Andrews should stop forcing his values on other people’s children, and give teachers the time and support to focus on teaching our kids to read, write and do maths.
Unless Daniel Andrews is prepared to take a more holistic look at the teaching profession, including how to attract more talented individuals and the low retention rate of graduate teachers, Victorian children will continue to suffer.
The reality is that education quality is flat-lining under Daniel Andrews and James Merlino.
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