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The Teachers are revolting – and they don’t like the report cards either.

By johnboy - 14 March 2006 102

The Canberra Times is reproting reporting that, not content with a 9% pay rise over three years, the ACT’s teachers are walking from their posts this morning for a knees-up at the convention centre to discuss the effects of “ACT Inflation” and why it means their CPI increases should be bigger than ours.

But that’s not all on the agenda for the barricades.

Teachers will vote today on whether to engage in further industrial action, which includes a ban on implementing new A to E report cards and no further work on a current curriculum overhaul.

From this year, ACT public schools are required to grade students from A to E as part of new reporting requirements tied to a Federal Government funding package.

Teacher unions in NSW and Victoria have opposed the move, saying it disadvantages disabled and very young students, and those whose first language is not English.

I can see how letting students and their parents know how they’re actually doing might be a bad idea for our teachers.

UPDATED: Thanks to Nyssa we have a picture of the protest.

Teachers Protest in Canberra 14-Mar-06

FURTHER UPDATE: The Canberra Times has a follow up story in which it seems the teachers are willing to sacrifice $152 million in federal funds for their report card fetish.

What’s Your opinion?

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102 Responses to
The Teachers are revolting – and they don’t like the report cards either.
bonfire 1:20 pm 14 Mar 06

there should be a:

national award for teachers.
performance standards for teachers (incl provision for removing non-performers)
national student report card standards.
national primary and secondary curriculum.
compulsory phys ed for students of 1 hour a day.
longer school hours.
no requirement for compulsory ‘homework’.

jr 1:19 pm 14 Mar 06

Here we go again:

Without having to dig very deep I can find the following money that could be freed up by scrapping or deferring projects which have already been allocated funding:

Correctional Facility: $110 Million
Abortorium (tree park): $60 Million
Ginninderra District Mega School: $45 Million

Wow! I just found $200 Million that could be better used on education and health!

Thumper 12:41 pm 14 Mar 06

Actually, not all teachers are revolting.

In fact, some are quite good looking.

Swaggie 12:41 pm 14 Mar 06

The more I think about this the more I think the teachers need to rein in their Union, I’m sure this isn’t all coming from the rank and file after speaking to the kid’s teachers.

Thumper 12:37 pm 14 Mar 06

Good point Les…

Useless busway or education?

I know which is more important to the future of this Territory and this country.

Thumper 12:34 pm 14 Mar 06

The current system is rubbish. You cannot fail a kid, you have to say they are developing. Apparently it’s damaging to the student to say they have failed.

Well, if you are failing then do something about it!

Until it is recognised that all students are not equal because some work harder, some are brighter, some are plain slack, we are just going to get more of the same.

Report cards need to state facts. Ie, if a kid can’t read, then it should say so, it should not have this airy fairy developing.

Parents would rather know how their child is coping than getting the rubbish they currently get.


I sometimes despair for our current system of total social awareness but with no real core learning of the basics.

Les Whinin 11:48 am 14 Mar 06

ACT Education Minister Katy Gallagher was on the radio this morning, spouting rubbish about how the ACT Government could not afford to offer a wage increase as large as the percentage requested as there is simply not enough money in the budget.

I find that particularly strange given that Simon Corbell seems to have found an allocation of $150 million to fund the “3 minute express”.

I’m not saying that a 12% wage increase is justified, but whinging about having no money in the budget for teachers is the height of idiocy when you’ve got another minister throwing millions down the toilet on an extremely frivolous idea.

RandomGit 11:24 am 14 Mar 06

AFAIK, the old system wouldn’t let you say anything ‘negative’ but truthful about a childs performance.

Many a night was spent helping the wife word her reports so they would be informative without pinging the level 2, who would review all the reports.

She often wanted to say “Johnny needs to read more at home and focus during class times to improve his basic English Skills” but that apparently came off to bitchy.

RandomGit 11:19 am 14 Mar 06

Right now, every teacher not named Borke hates you.

johnboy 11:19 am 14 Mar 06

NSW Education Minister Carmell Tebbutt explained “plain english report cards” on 31-JAN-06 thusly:

‘Plain-English’ Student Report Cards will be introduced into all schools. These new report cards will allow parents to clearly see; their child’s overall achievement graded from A for outstanding through to E for limited; more details about how their child is performing in English and Mathematics; and simpler written comments identifying their child’s strengthens and weaknesses;

So they’re not exactly as plain spoken as some might imagine or hope.

The idea that parents who move state should be able to expect and demand an identical system wherever they go is an intriguing one…

simto 11:18 am 14 Mar 06

Having recently had an opportunity to read through my old report cards, there’s an awful lot of guff written in there that can’t possibly have been helpful to my parents, or, indeed, any one else. Stuff like “Simon is a joy to teach” isn’t exactly helpful in working out “does he actually understand Physics at all” (answer – no, because the teacher’s an alcoholic who rambles excessively, and I’m in year 11 focussed very intently on the person arousing my hormones who’s sitting next to me).

bulldog 11:09 am 14 Mar 06

That should be broke, not “borke”.

bulldog 11:09 am 14 Mar 06

If it ain’t borke don’t fix it – What is the proposed system of grading if they abandon the A to E program? Surely any system that doen’t grade a students performance will not help kids in the long run.

As for a twelve percent pay increase over three years – that is pretty big. I don’t know the history of our teacher’s salary increases, but there are not many other industries that would be able to accomodate such big jump. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not syaing they don’t deserve it – I don’t know so I don’t have an opinion – but perhaps they should start with the nine percent that will bring them on par with NSW teachers.

jamius maximus 10:49 am 14 Mar 06

I can remember numerous teachers’ strikes throughout my primary and secondary schooling in the ACT education system – and they were awesome.

Now we hear that students won’t get grades sent home to their parents either?? It’s a good time to be a student.

RandomGit 9:33 am 14 Mar 06

Ha ha, ‘reproting’.

Anyway, there is no performance review and compensation system in effect (politics of favoritism I imagine), so I don’t know how much of it is to compensate for that, if any.

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