In the 2011 NAPLAN writing test, students will be asked to write in a persuasive style. Under a persuasive style of writing, the writer must convince someone of his or her point of view or opinion. The decision to change from narrative to persuasive was made by all Australian Education Ministers at a Ministerial Council for Education, Early Childhood Development and Youth Affairs (MCEECDYA) meeting held on 15 April 2010. Support and sample materials demonstrating this genre are available on the NAPLAN website.
Australian Government Minister for Education Julia Gillard has delivered an address to the John Curtin Institute of Public Policy outlining the role of education in the government's productivity agenda. See transcript of Minister's speech 10 June 2010.
The South Australian Government is to review the way teachers are recruited into public schools to give principals more choice and to help retain talented young teachers who are currently on casual employment contracts. See statement 8 June 2010 by state Education Minister Jay Weatherill and article in The Advertiser (AdelaideNow) also 8 June 2010.
A commentary in The Australian 9 June 2010 notes falling enrolments in most Asian language education courses. See also the feature article in this week's edition of Curriculum Leadership.
In New South Wales the Anglican and Catholic churches continue to express concerns regarding the secular ethics course that is currently being trialled at a range of public schools in the state. See article 9 June and related article 8 June 2010 in the Sydney Morning Herald.
The NSW Government has outlined its plans for educational spending in a statement 8 June 2010. See also article in the Sydney Morning Herald 9 June 2010 on the educational provisions of the state budget, and an article on staffing changes in the NSW Department of Education in The Australian 9 June 2010.
The NSW Minister for Education and Training, Verity Firth, has announced that $15 million in funding will be provided to replace unflued gas heaters in around 100 schools located in the coldest areas of the state. See Minister's statement 9 June 2010.
The Australian Education Union has called for the closure of a website that ranks schools by NAPLAN test results. See report on ABC News 8 June 2010.
The Tasmanian Minister for Education and Skills, Lin Thorpe, has announced a number of changes to post-compulsory schooling in the state. As part of the changes, the Polytechnic and Academy boards will be brought under the Department of Education. See Minister's statement 7 June 2010. See also article in The Mercury 7 June 2010 and article in BigPond News 8 June 2010.
The allocation of funding between school sectors is considered in an opinion piece on the ABC's The Drum Unleashed program 9 June 2010.
In Victoria there has been a large increase in the number of intervention orders related to bullying in schools. Many cases relate to cyber-bullying. In response, the State Government is planning to introduce new anti-bullying laws. See article in The Herald Sun 9 June 2010.
Schools across the country are taking part in a trial of the draft national curriculum in order to provide feedback about content and implementation. Feedback from participating schools in Canberra is described in a report on ABC News 8 June 2010.
International students face a number of challenges during the transition from secondary to tertiary study, according to academic Betty Leask. Changes include differences in class sizes and contact hours, moving away from their host families, and balancing study and part-time work. See article in The Advertiser (AdelaideNow) 9 June 2010.
For more frequent news updates on Australian and international school education, access Curriculum Leadership on Twitter.