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The Forum > Article Comments > If Gonski is the answer what is the question? > Comments

If Gonski is the answer what is the question? : Comments

By Steven Meyer, published 11/9/2012

Perhaps there is more to improving educational outcomes than tinkering with funding models.

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If you want an example of some writing about a subject they clearly know nothing about, you could not find a better example then this.

The author has just tried to post a the same old talking points of right wingers always post. all he's done different is carefully not say "Voucher".
Posted by Kenny, Tuesday, 11 September 2012 9:49:12 AM
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I fought for 3 years to rescue my daughter from a life of abuse and neglect at the hands of her mother. When i finally gained sole care of my daughter she was in a parlous state. AT 8/9 YO she was unable to read or write even basic words. She was unable to do even basic maths not even her times tables. She did the year 3 basic skills test, finished bottom in the school and was placed in a special class for SLOW children. I do not blame her teachers for that. My daughter was missing up to 20 weeks of school every year while with her mother. It's jolly hard to educate a child who is hardly ever there. I recieved tremendous support from the school when it became apparent how badly off she was. As well as this i spent hours every night week after week, month after month, year after year teaching her myself. Went to her uni graduation a few months ago. She completed a 4 year Psychology degree with first class honours while she was still only 21 yo, won the university medal and is now 6 months into her PHD. My daughter only attended public schools. No money to spend on a private education, the family court saw to that. All that was needed was a lot of love and hard work.
Posted by eyeinthesky, Tuesday, 11 September 2012 12:51:48 PM
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I would not expect a review of funding to do much more than provide a review of funding, and thatís what the Gonski panel did.

Its two serious flaws are not mentioned in this article, and neither of them has anything to do with the internet. They are the method it uses to calculate the school resource standard and its endorsement of the Howard governmentís SES funding model, something no one who relies on The Age, for example, would know because The Age has never mentioned it and has refused to publish every one of the 38 letters I have submitted on the Gonski review.

In fact, there is hardly a commentary on the Gonsiki recommendations that correctly reports what its recommendations are. Those who want more information can find it at http://community.tes.co.uk/forums/t/576719.aspx.
Posted by Chris C, Tuesday, 11 September 2012 4:01:41 PM
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I want to clear up a few points:

Kenny,

all our children went to public schools. I am a very strong supporter of public education.

However I think, realistically, we are not going to be able to hire enough talented teachers using the current model. The technology is evolving and public education should take advantage of it.

Chris C

I agree with you about the Howard government's SES model.

However my whole point was that Gonski should NOT have been confined to funding models. What is needed is a more thoroughgoing review.

THE BOTTOM LINE

The technology is appearing. Either public schools will learn to use it or they will be left behind, as will the students who attend them. For good or ill, that is the reality.

Kenny (again)

I do not believe public schools should be funded using a voucher system. I do not know what I wrote that led you to believe anything of the sort.

On the other hand an alternative to the Howard government's SES model for funding private schools could be means tested vouchers. The value of the vouchers would depend on the income of the parents, not the so-called SES of the area from which the school draws its students.

I think that would be better than the current funding model for private schools.

FINALLY

I do not think you improve education by throwing money at it. I believe you improve education by trying various "models", keeping those that work and discarding those that don't.

In other words we junk the Leftie and Right wing theories and get empirical data.

What is more, we do not freeze our models into place. As the technology improves our models evolve.
Posted by stevenlmeyer, Tuesday, 11 September 2012 7:33:13 PM
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Steven, I like the thrust of your article. I mentioned in an earlier post that I think talks of funding are a bit premature. We have to work out what it is that we want to fund before we talk about how much it will cost. We are all aware that our education system needs considerable updating, but we seem to have no clear direction.

I'm not entirely convinced by your talk of the internet, but I'm happy to admit that I was extremely doubtful of internet banking when it first became available. It appears that I'm not a visionary. The school at which I work is elbow-deep in investigations into the use of online and other technologies to enhance learning. So much of our communication is now online; we are also pushed to have websites for each of our classes with all of our in-class resources on them, as well as links and extension activities. Computers are so integral to our teaching and learning that, when the network goes down (as often happens), all hell breaks loose.

The problem, I think, is that we still have no real direction. We have our fingers in a lot of different pies - and, as is the case when fingers are spread so widely, we are unable to grasp a pie and run with it. Before we do that, we need to decide which pie is best.
Posted by Otokonoko, Tuesday, 11 September 2012 10:50:40 PM
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Like your analysis about funding Otokonoko.

On education, I was delighted to discover this speech by Ken Robinson - Schools Kill Creativity.

http://www.ted.com/talks/lang/en/ken_robinson_says_schools_kill_creativity.html

More talks along similar lines are on the TED site.
http://www.ted.com/search?q=ken+robinson
Posted by pelican, Tuesday, 11 September 2012 11:50:43 PM
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