Teachers in the Philippines are to take part in 'enrichment seminars' in mathematics, science and English subjects in 2006. The program for teachers is an idea of the Department of Education, which recently informed the government that up to 75 per cent of the country’s elementary school graduates cannot read adequately. See undated report by Ben R Rosario in the Manila Bulletin Online.
The Qualifications and Curriculum Authority in England will introduce new rules and regulations for GCSE coursework in order to prevent cheating. A two-year investigation has revealed that final-year students were receiving inappropriate help from their parents, that teachers were sometimes 'overgenerous' in their awarding of grades, and that plagiarism had become more widespread because of computer technology and the Internet. See Education: Who's been helping you then? by Sian Griffiths in the Times Online 9 October 2005.
A recent survey, conducted by The Times Educational Supplement among teachers and principals in England and Wales, found that two-thirds of secondary principals and one-third of primary principals were of the view that some of their students' educational needs would be better served in special schools. Almost 90 per cent of principals believed that their schools were not adequately resourced to cater for students with special needs. See the article by Donald Macleod in The Educational Guardian 14 October 2005.
A government taskforce has recommended changes to approaches to school discipline in England. The Steer Report has proposed a national charter of rights and responsibilities for teachers, students and parents; a law which holds parents responsible for truant children; and a clear right for teachers to restrain students by using 'reasonable force'. See the article in The Education Guardian 21 October 2005.
School counsellors and welfare staff in South Australian Government schools are currently participating in training to help them to become specialists in the area of child protection as part of a South Australian Government plan to have a trained child protection specialist in every State school by the end of 2006. For more information see the Media Release 20 October 2005.
A report conducted by the International Centre of Excellence for Education in Mathematics has found that there are disparities in the mathematics syllabuses across Australian State and Territory curricula. According to the report, Comparison of Year 12 Pre-tertiary Mathematics Subjects in Australia 2004–2005, subjects considered central to the mathematics syllabuses in some jurisdictions were optional in others, creating difficulties for those students who choose to study mathematics subjects at tertiary level in a jurisdiction other than that in which they completed their schooling. The disparity also creates a difference in educational standards between States and Territories. See the article by Ebru Yaman in the The Australian 24 October 2005.
The Queensland Studies Authority (QSA) is seeking input from teachers, administrators and the community, as part of its Senior Phase of Learning syllabuses review. A consultation paper discusses the five key issues under consideration. Submissions close on 14 February 2006. See media release by Education Minister Rod Welford 18 October 2005 and article in Education Views 21 October 2005.
A partnership between Education Queensland and the Cooperative Research Centre for Sugar Industry Innovation through Biotechnology (SIIB) will see researchers mentor teachers and students from twelve Queensland schools. The teachers will develop work units that will be published on a website which is intended as a basis for future school, research and industry partnerships. Schools can apply through the Spotlight on Science website. See article in Education Views 21 October 2005 p15.
A new curriculum targeting adolescents who suffer from dating violence is being piloted in 19 schools across the USA. The curriculum is designed to help adolescents identify and deal with agression, and/or support friends who face it. The program also aims to educate students about normal behaviours, particularly those who witness domestic violence in the home. Approximately one-third of teens in the USA have reported suffering some form of abuse from dating. See article in Des Moines Register 14 October 2005.
The October/November 2005 edition of the AustLit News includes a review of recent media reports on the content of English curricula in Australian schools. It includes comments from Cardinal George Pell that classical literature has been neglected in favour of critical literacy. The review also provides examples from the Tasmanian and New South Wales curricula which cover both classical and modern literature.
Internet filters used by schools in the USA often block valid educational content according to a recent report presented at the American Association of School Librarians (AASL). Increased communication between teachers and technology staff over filtering is advocated to improve the situation. See article in eSchoolNews 13 October 2005 (free registration required).