The 2015 principal health and well-being report was released on Thursday, highlighting an increase in instances of bullying, threats and physical violence. The report’s author, Philip Riley, said that community action was needed to save a profession experiencing a high turnover. “Many of the results are not only of serious concern for the profession as a whole, but also the wider community. As an example of the toll that issues like this can take, this year’s survey saw double the rate of ‘red flags’ compared with last year,” he said.
Also making news this week, the provider of a set of Special Religious Education (SRE) materials, called You: an introduction – which some have labelled as sexist and racist – confirmed that they would be removed from NSW classrooms as of next year. The SRE resource came under fire in May when parent lobby group Fairness in Religion in Schools (FIRIS) claimed that curriculum material used by SRE providers promoted sexism, homophobia and discrimination against students with disabilities and from multicultural backgrounds.
Finally, the 2015 NAPLAN National Report was published by the Australian Curriculum and Assessment Reporting Authority (ACARA) on Wednesday, confirming the initial findings of the summary information released in August. The report revealed stable student achievement – relative to 2008 and 2014, with some improvements nationally and in each state and territory for some year levels and some domains. ACARA CEO, Robert Randall, said the ACT, NSW, and Victoria continued to be top performers in most domains. “The high performing jurisdictions have maintained their relatively higher achievement levels in most domains,” he said.