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The 800th Anniversary of the Magna Carta

I’m not sure if I have a bias towards these things, as an old Legal Studies teacher, but I think the story of the Magna Carta is a critical one for all our secondary students to be aware of. It is probably the most renowned and important legal document in the history of the English-speaking world. It opens up questions around what is justice?… Where does authority come from? …How does a healthy approach to balancing power contribute to a just civilization? Therefore the June 15th 800th anniversary is something that could be a worthy theme to be noted in our schools. By celebrating this anniversary we not only assist our students to understand the ground-breaking and justice-seeking work of the Magna Carta but we can also encourage them to continue advancing God’s kingdom by advocating for justice in all things.

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Great new resource – Transformation by Design

AACS has been involved in producing a wonderful new resource that assists schools and teachers in curriculum development and documentation. The challenge of complying with the requirements of the Australian Curriculum and yet being true to developing curriculum from a Christian basis is not an…

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2015 Christian Schools National Policy Forum

The NPF was again a great success, included a fine program and was attended by unprecedented numbers. Thanks to our CSA colleagues for organising it. It was great to see many of you there…

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Religious Freedom – Tasmania

The Tasmanian Parliament recently (May 28th) passed changes to the state Anti-Discrimination Act that allows faith-based schools to use religious criteria when considering enrolment. This was in keeping with the government’s pre-election policy. This provision is accepted in other…

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Disability Standards for Education Review

It has been great to work alongside my colleagues at CSA and Adventist Schools Australia to lodge a joint submission. It’s just duplication when we are submitting very similar insights and…

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Understanding the Disability Standards

The following is a short introduction on the Disability Standards. The table beneath is an excellent and helpful summary on the rights of students/ families and a school’s responsibility. The Disability Standards for Education were made under the Disability Discrimination Act 1992 (the DDA). The DDA makes it unlawful to discriminate on the basis of disability in a number of …

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Concerns about the Disability Definition and its Consequences

This is venturing into tricky territory. The key definition that undergirds the Standards is that “all students with disability must be able to access and participate in education on the same basis as students without disability.” On the one hand everyone would applaud this inclusive, caring and justice-based objective. However…

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SWD Numbers Swelling

One of the consequences of the Nationally Consistent Collection of Data for SWD is the large increase in the numbers of students who have been caught up in…

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Great new Autism Assistance

Spectrum Australia (Aspect) has launched a website called Launchpad offering resources to help those with autism transition from school to…

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Victorian Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities – Review

In another shared exercise with our CSA and ASA colleagues we made a joint submission to this Review. Our submission gave particular attention to…

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Education Council Meeting – May 29th

At the 2nd Education Council meeting for the year Education Ministers discussed …

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The STEM and Coding Discussion

Since the budget speeches the issue of Australian education’s focus on the subjects of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) has grabbed many headlines. The ALP made a big grab by offering…

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Concern about Islamic Schools Compliance with the Education Act 2013

The investigation into 6 Islamic schools about possible breaches shouldn’t be a concern to Christian schools if they have all their governance and policy matters in healthy order…

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Changes at the ‘Early Years’ end

The recent announcement of guaranteed funding for Kinders for the next two years is welcomed. However, changed expectations about time spent at home before school and pressures to ‘push down’ outcome based curricula on students at an earlier age are…

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OECD Skills Outlook 2015 – Youth, Skills and Employability

Young people around the world are struggling to enter the labour market. In some OECD countries, one in four 16-29 year-olds is neither employed nor in education or training. The OECD Skills Outlook 2015 shows how improving the employability of youth requires…

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The PISA Report – Australia 14th

The OECD Report (titled The high cost of low educational performance), the world’s largest comparative table, has been recently published and Asian countries are in the top five places and African countries are at the bottom. Singapore heads the table, while Australia ranks at number…

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Anything to be learnt from the East Asians?

The article attached below from the South China Morning Post (April 13, 2015) looks at why Western educators are studying East Asian scores on global exams and accordingly changing their teaching methods. Is the ‘top 5’ ranking for Shanghai, Hong Kong, Singapore, Japan, South Korea and Taiwan in the OECD’s Pisa program something that we should…

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Further learning from Asia’s School Systems?

In a completely different set of insights into these educational systems Prof Yong Zhao from the Mitchell Institute, warns Australian educators against emulating the high-pressure education policies that Asian nations have used in the past, in the light of what they are turning to. I was surprised to see…

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Five Things Schools Need to Know about Privacy

School Governance ran a Webinar titled ‘Privacy in Practice’ and 5 key questions emerged that schools needed help with. It reflected that there are still many areas of uncertainty for schools when it comes to …

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OTHER INTERESTING MATERIAL

A Donocracy

The attached brilliant article ‘Ordinary people can save democracy from a distant, selfish elite’ sees Steve Hilton, the former chief strategist for British Prime Minister David Cameron, reflect on the state of UK democracy and the way power and money work together. It’s a great read; good for an…

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