Fellows Chris Bonnor and Bernie Shepherd discuss NAPLAN results and education reform

The NAPLAN test results have been released and the annual contest over interpreting the performance of our school kids has begun. The results demonstrate a national performance plateauing in reading, writing and numeracy and provide yet another wake-up all to revisit education reform.

The Federal Minister of Education, Simon Birmingham, resumed his argument that needs-based funding to the more disadvantaged schools is not improving student performance, as he increasingly distances himself from the findings in the Gonski Review recommendations.

CPD’s recent report Uneven Playing Field: The State of Australia’s Schools, written by Education Fellows Chris Bonnor and Bernie Shepherd, showed growing gaps in disadvantage and inequity amongst our schools, and reaffirmed why full implementation of the Gonski Review was even more urgent than when its recommendations were released in 2011.

Regrettably the Turnbull Government is quick to talk about the need for innovation and ‘agility’ in our economy, yet equally committed to walking away from potential policy solutions that support their rhetoric.

This week, both Chris and Bernie were back in the media providing insights and analyses into the meaning of our NAPLAN results and advocating for a revitalisation of the Gonski Review recommendations. You can read their contributions to the debate here:

Chris and Bernie wrote an op-ed for The Guardian about why we will not lift our performance until proper, targeted needs-based funding of schools is delivered.

Chris was interviewed by Melissa Davey at The Guardian about how the NAPLAN results demonstrate we are leaving disadvantaged school kids behind

Chris also provided comment for another Melissa Davey piece about why Minister Birmingham’s position on funding is not credible or helpful to the schools debate

Chris and Bernie wrote an op-ed for Crikey about why the NAPLAN results show us that better targeted schools investment based on need is sorely required across Australia.

Chris spoke with education editor Tim Dodd for a piece in the AFR: A dangerous achievement gap is growing in Australia’s schools.’ 

Chris also discussed the NAPLAN results and the CPD report on SBS, Sky News and Sydney’s 2UE radio.


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