The ACT Department of Education and Training has issued a discussion paper on “Improving ACT Public High Schools and Colleges”.
The discussion component seems to be driven by two pages asking “What if?”:
… high schools and colleges worked together as connected learning communities to offer greater choice to students?
… some schools offered courses in a range of locations?
… schools developed their curriculum in partnership with the Canberra Institute of Technology (CIT) or a university?
… students were able to combine school and work more formally?
… partnerships between schools and business gave students regular access to work-based training, mentor support and pathways from school to work?
… some schools had flexible timetables?
… the virtual school became a reality?
… some students worked from home or elsewhere?
… some schools offered two-shift days?
… we had girls’ or boys’ schools, or some schools offering single-sex classes?
… some schools offered accelerated learning for academically gifted students?
… we had selective entry schools?
… some schools developed specialist programs for students with interests in particular sports (golf, tennis, athletics, rowing, football, hockey) or the performing arts, visual arts, graphic design, media and communications?
… some schools developed centres of excellence for students with talents in areas such as mathematics, science and technology, languages and the humanities?
… students could develop personalised pathways across a range of education settings—schools, universities, CIT, industry and the community?
… schools in a local area became a federation of schools and pooled their resources to offer a broader curriculum to their students?
… partnerships were developed between public and non-government schools?
… new processes for graduating from high school to college were developed?
UPDATE: The Liberals’ Zed Seselja has responded a day late asking “won’t anyone think of the private school children?”
“The Canberra Liberals have always championed choice for parents on the education of their children. ACT Labor has never genuinely supported parental choice. Mr Barr’s discussion paper appears to be providing options for replicating many elements of the private sector and incorporating this into the public system.
“This comes at a time when funding to private schools has stalled, despite the percentage of Canberra parents sending their children to private schools remaining high.