In this week’s top story, the NSW Board of Studies announced the biggest changes to the state’s curriculum in 17 years. Under the new rules, which take effect from 2018, HSC students will require a pass mark in numeracy and literacy in order to gain the qualification. Two days later, more changes were announced – this time to the curriculum itself, which will see sweeping reforms to 17 Maths, Science, English and History courses. The new HSC syllabus will provide the state’s students with more education on Indigenous culture, the environment, Asia and Feminism.
In other news, a top private school expelled two of its Year 11 students who set up a misogynistic Instagram account. The account, which has since been removed, was set up by students from Brighton Grammar School, and asked visitors to vote on the “slut of the year”. On Monday, the school released a statement saying that the Instagram post was “disgraceful” and “does not reflect the values” of the school. “Disrespectful behaviour on any social media site is simply unacceptable and will not be tolerated,” the statement read. “Brighton Grammar regrets the distress caused to the girls and their families. The girls’ wellbeing is a top priority and Brighton Grammar has been working with these families over the weekend and will continue offering ongoing support.”
Finally, an article published in The Daily Telegraph on Tuesday claimed that Cheltenham Girls High School, located in Sydney, banned the terms ‘girls’, ‘ladies’ and ‘women’ following a staff meeting last term, citing potential discrimination issues that may arise from the use of the words. The news prompted angry parents to approach their local MP to demand help in getting the school to reverse the policy. However, in a post on its Facebook page, the school said it would not change any existing references to gender. “Cheltenham Girls’ High School has a proud, ongoing tradition of providing high quality education for girls. The school has not, and will not, change the way students’ gender is referred to,” read the statement. “The school supports all of its students in a positive and inclusive environment, in which each girl is treated with respect and dignity.”