Home' Policy Magazine : Policy Vol 30 - No 1 Contents 37
POLICY • Vol. 30 No. 1 • Autumn 2014
planning, observation, review and feedback of
classroom practices, and team teaching. Box 5
describes practices in Shanghai.
Such practices already take place in some
Australian schools,22 but more often there is little
more than lip service. Teacher education faculties
like to think that they produce ‘refective
practitioners.’ Perhaps they do, but this tells us
nothing about what happens in the classroom.
‘Never waste a good crisis’ is a well-known
political slogan. Australian schooling is not in
crisis, but it is expensive and it is performing
well below potential. It would be a pity if the
Donnelly and Wiltshire curriculum review and
the inquiry into teacher education wasted the
opportunity of setting the stage for reform.
1 ACARA (Australian Curriculum Assessment and Report
Authority), e Australian Curriculum (ACARA, 2013).
2 John Ainley and Eveline Gebhardt, Measure for Measure,
A Review of School Outcomes in Australia (Australian
Council for Educational Research (ACER), 2013).
3 Te Club of Rome is a global think tank that sprang
to prominence after the 1973 oil crisis with e Limits
to Growth (Donella H. Meadows, Dennis L. Meadows,
Jørgen Randers, and William W. Behrens III, e Limits
to Growth (Club of Rome, Universe Books, 1972)).
Te work was Malthusian in both tone and approach,
with population and pollution projected exponentially,
and mitigating improvements taking place only in
discrete increments. Its modelling lacked any awareness
of the role of prices or improved exploration and
extraction technology and its forecasts became rapidly
discredited in serious policy discussion. e club's latest
work projects the state of the world in 2052. See Jørgen
Randers, 2052: A Global Forecast for the Next Forty
Years (Club of Rome, Chelsea Green Publishing, 2012).
4 ACARA (Australian Curriculum Assessment and Report
Authority), e Australian Curriculum (ACARA, 2013),
5 As above.
6 Department of Education, Strengthening the Australian
Curriculum (Government of Australia).
7 Eric A. Hanushek and Ludger Woessmann provide the
most technically complete guide to this work. Eric A.
Hanushek and Ludger Woessmann, ‘Te role of cognitive
skills in economic development,' Journal of Economic
Literature 46:3 (2008). See also Paul E. Peterson and
Eric A. Hanushek ‘The Vital Link of Education and
Prosperity,’ e Wall Street Journal (11 September 2013)
for a more accessible source.
8 David H. Kamens and Aaron Benavot, ‘National,
Regional and International Learning Assessments:
Trends Among Developing Countries, 1960–2009,’
Globalisation, Societies and Education 9:2 (June 2011), 291.
9 Mona Mourshed, Chinezi Chijioke, and Michael
Barber, How the World's Most Improved School Systems
Keep Getting Better (McKinsey & Co, 2010).
10 D.D. Guttenplan, ‘O.E.C.D. warns West on education
gaps,’ International New York Times (9 December 2013);
Ben Jensen, Catching Up: Learning from the Best School
Systems in East Asia (Melbourne: Grattan Institute,
11 Jennifer Buckingham, Keeping PISA in Perspective:
Why Australian Education Policy Should Not Be Driven
by International Test Results, Issue Analysis 136 (Sydney:
Te Centre for Independent Studies, 2012).
12 OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation
and Development), Strong Performers and Successful
Reformers in Education, Lessons from PISA for the United
States (Paris: OECD, 2011).
13 As above; Mona Mourshed, et al. How the World's Most
Improved School Systems Keep Getting Better, as above;
Ben Jensen, Catching Up, as above; Ben Jensen, Turning
Around Schools: It Can Be Done (Melbourne: Grattan
14 Te lack of a measurable relationship between spending
and performance is one of the most durable and soundly
based research ndings in education. In its analysis of
PISA results for 2009, OECD (as above, 28) found that
expenditure per student explains only 9% of the variation
in PISA mean performance between countries. Modest
spending per student does not mean poor performance
by education systems. Estonia and Poland, which spend
around US$40,000 per student, perform at the same
level as Norway and the United States, which spend more
than US$100,000 per student. New Zealand, one of the
highest-performing countries in reading, spends well
below the international average per student.
15 OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and
Development), Strong Performers and Successful Reformers
in Education, as above.
16 World Bank, Does Linking Teacher Pay to Student
Performance Improve Results? (Washington, DC: World
Bank Human Development Network, 2010).
17 Eric A. Hanushek and Ludger Woessmann, ‘Do better
schools lead to more growth? Cognitive skills, economic
outcomes, and causation,’ Journal of Economic Growth
18 Peter Karmel, Schools in Australia: Report, Interim
Committee for the Australian Schools Commission
(Canberra: Australian Government Publishing Service
19 Teacher Numbers, Teacher Quality: Lessons from Secondary
Education in Asia (Bangkok: UNESCO, 2009).
20 As above, 8.
21 Mona Mourshed, et al. How the World's Most Improved
School Systems Keep Getting Better, as above, 79.
22 Ben Jensen, Turning Around Schools: It Can Be Done,
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