Home >  Blog >  Change to the Australian Curriculum

Change to the Australian Curriculum

Posted by Garry Collins, AATE President on 12 August 2015

The following letter was submitted for possible inclusion in The Australian of Monday 10 August 2015 but it was not selected for publication. It was in response to a front page story in the weekend edition (8-9 August) which had the (not very accurate) headline "Curriculum shifts focus to core skills".

Change to national curriculum

When I attended primary school in Queensland in the 1950s, one of the subjects I studied was a combination of history, geography and civics that was called social studies.

At high school in the 1960s, I did history and geography as separate subjects and this was still the case at high school level when I started teaching in 1969. Later, history and geography were merged into a subject called SOSE (Study of Society and the Environment). By then, I was teaching only English but this seemed to me to be a sensible response to concerns about a crowded curriculum.

When John Howard was Prime Minister, there was a call for all Australian students to study history as a separate subject. As I recall, that push was supported by this newspaper.

Because of this background, I enjoyed some wry amusement while reading your front page report that there is to be a new amalgamated subject in the Australian Curriculum called Humanities and Social Science.

I thought of that useful French expression "plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose". It also occurred to me that it is often not really helpful for politicians to meddle with the details of school curriculum.

Garry Collins, AATE PresidentAuthor: Garry Collins, AATE President
About: Garry Collins is the Immediate Past President of ETAQ and began a 2 year term as AATE President on 1 January 2014. A retired high school English teacher, he now works in the School of Education at the University of Queensland as a sessional tutor in English curriculum courses.
Tags: Branch News Townsville

Post comment

Upcoming Events

JCU Spectacular

"Double, double toil and trouble": Creative Writing and Macbeth Professional Development Workshops
Dr Emma Maguire and Dr Claire Hansen

In this double workshop PD session, join Dr Emma Maguire for a one-hour workshop on creative writing, and Dr Claire Hansen for a one-hour session on teaching Macbeth. Discover the essential e...

Category:   Workshop
Start Time:   9:00 AM
Date:   Saturday 25th July 2020
Venue:   Online
Email Enquiries:   adminofficer@etaq.org.au


Diving Deep into External Assessment

Student (and teacher) event: Diving Deep into the Analytical Essay Pre-recorded materials open to registered participants from 3pm,  with live discussion in half hour blocks from 4pm - 5:30pm. Live discussions will primarily relate to Writing the Analytical Essay, but students will be free to ask questions about their selected texts....

Category:   Student (and teacher) Event
Start Time:   3:00 PM
Date:   Wednesday 9th September 2020
Venue:   Online
Phone Enquiries:   0455464000


Diving Deep into the Analytical Essay for teachers

The Teacher workshop  Pre-recorded workshop open to registered participants, with live discussion from 11am - 12pm.
Final Preparation for the EA will explore: the advice provided in Writing the Analytical Essay; giving quality formative feedback to students; trouble-shooting common problems.
After the event: The pre-recorded teac...

Category:   Workshop
Start Time:   9:00 AM
Date:   Saturday 12th September 2020
Venue:   Online
Phone Enquiries:   0455464000


SCCC Resource sharing

Andrew Snee and the Senior English staff at  Southern Cross Catholic College would like to share some of the teaching strategies and modelling/scaffolding resources that have been implemented and devised for the demands of general English. From analysing representations of prejudice and alienation in literary texts to creating engaging im...

Category:   Seminar
Start Time:   9:00 AM
Date:   Saturday 17th October 2020
Venue:   Southern Cross Catholic College


Early Career Conference 2020: Diving Deep into Teaching

This event for teachers in their first firve years of teaching and those who are new to the teaching of English will submerge you in a new, colourful, and enchanting world where you can engage with your peers. it is also a 'not to be missed' event for preservice teachers.  This event will be re-scheduled for term 4 ...

Category:   Seminar
Start Time:   9:00 AM
Date:   Saturday 24th October 2020
Venue:   Griffith University, Mt Gravatt campus
Venue Address:   176 Messines Ridge Rd, Mount Gravatt QLD 4122


< Previous | 1 | 2 | Next >
View all

Latest News

View all

Blog Feed

Grammar myths

Sep 12 2017
An edited version of the letter below was pu...

Impact on learning

Sep 12 2017
The following letter was submitted to The Au...
Read all

Testimonials

Read All

This is the first time I have been to an ETAQ conference and it was really sensational to get so much at all of the sessions.

ETAQ conferences always have sessions that make me excited to be a teacher.

I know that ETAQ conferences in the past have never disappointed - valuable, relevant, practical, inspiring so I came again.

Read All

Newsletter

Receive updates
from ETAQ

PO Box 3375, STAFFORD,
Queensland, Australia, 4053
(07) 3284 3718
ABN: 17 689 278 512

Connect to a great range of people who are passionate about English and have their finger on the pulse.

Be Connected