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Queensland Must Maintain the Momentum of its Education Reform Agenda

1 June 2017

Queensland must maintain the momentum of its education reform agenda to build on the significant improvements in student outcomes made over the past decade, according to an issues paper released today by Independent Schools Queensland (ISQ).

Queensland’s Education Future: Continuing the Reform Agenda identifies nine priority areas which should be the focus of the state’s future school reform efforts.

ISQ Executive Director David Robertson released the issues paper today at ISQ’s biennial State Forum which was attended by more than 200 independent school leaders and educators at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre.

Mr Robertson said the paper contends that ongoing changes and investment is required to:

  • facilitate greater school choice, autonomy and diversity
  • meet the demand for new schools
  • continue an agenda of school improvement
  • further enhance teacher quality
  • strengthen early learning outcomes
  • improve student outcomes and personalised learning
  • foster internationalisation and global citizenship
  • build 21st century and technological capabilities; and
  • maintain rigour in curriculum and assessment.

Mr Robertson said the united approach to education reform taken by Queensland’s three schooling sectors – state, Catholic and independent – had been a key driver in the state’s improved outcomes.

However, he said governments, education systems and schools, despite the challenges associated with implementing change, must continue to strive for further improvements in the best interests of all students.

“Queensland has made some of the most significant structural reforms of any state or territory over the past decade, with the introduction of Prep, moving Year 7 to high school, an increased focus on early childhood education, adoption of the Australian Curriculum and overhauling senior schooling and tertiary entrance procedures,” Mr Robertson said.

“These have been successful and have put Queensland on a more equal footing with other states and territories. However, some of the hardest work lies ahead – unpacking and then scaling up approaches to education that engage and motivate students to reach new learning heights,” he said.

“There is no reason why students in Queensland should not achieve world-best educational outcomes. The groundwork has already been laid. We can and must do better.”

Mr Robertson said independent schools valued the Queensland Government’s support for schooling choice and looked forward to continuing their important partnership with the state and Catholic schooling sectors in progressing education reform.

The issues paper, Queensland’s Education Future: Continuing the Reform Agenda, is part of ISQ’s research-based initiative Our Schools – Our Future, which promotes public policy debate about schooling. The report is available on the ISQ website www.isq.qld.edu.au

Media Contact: Justine Nolan 0428 612 315 or jnolan@isq.qld.edu.au

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