An edited version of the letter below was published in The Courier-Mail of Thursday 2 February 2017. Underlined words were deleted and the bracketed ones inserted. The paper's heading for two letters on school education was "Education not all textbook choices".
School English teaching
Kevin Donnelly points out (Kevin Donnelly's opinion piece pointed out) that in the OECD's 2015 Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) a number of countries including Canada and Finland outperformed Australia ("Classic text beats dumb txt", Feb 1).
Donnelly regularly argues strongly in favour of school choice and the alleged superiority of private schools.
It should be noted that neither of these two countries has a significant private school sector and school choice is pretty much a non-issue.
(And) Neither has a standardised testing system like NAPLAN either.
My 35 years of teaching high school English (about twice as long as Donnelly managed) tells me that he (Donnelly) misrepresents the range of texts currently taught in schools. Donnelly (He) argues for "complex, challenging and enriching literary texts". Certainly there should be such texts, but they need to be carefully selected to suit particular groups of students. Interestingly, the novel foremost in the image accompanying the article is D.H. Lawrence's "Lady Chatterley's Lover" which I think was still banned in this country when I went to high school. Is Donnelly or this paper suggesting this book should be studied in schools?
Dr Donnelly is identified as a senior research fellow at the Australian Catholic University. It would be interesting to know what original research he had done in recent years, the sort that qualifies for publication in scholarly, peer-reviewed journals. I doubt there is any.
Essential English: Community of Practice 2021
Following on from the success of last year's event for teachers of Essential English, we will be running this event again this year with some modifications. The program is available and registrations are now open. Venue: Deception Bay SHS, Phillip Street, DECEPTION BAY. Registrations will close on Saturday 30 October. Interes...
Grammar PD term 4
To assist attendees to develop their understandings of grammar in order to fully comprehend and to effectively teach the Australia Curriculum: English (AC:E), a further session will be held on Saturday 20 November at John Paul College. The flyer gives further details. Registration will close on 14 November. ...
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