The Association of Heads of Independent Schools of Australia (AHISA) has welcomed the announcement of members of the ‘Gonski 2.0 Review’ panel.
‘The mix of expertise and perspectives which the panelists will bring to the Review suggests we can hope for an inclusive and strategic approach to determining what is best for Australian students and schools,’ said AHISA CEO, Ms Beth Blackwood.
Ms Blackwood said the Review to Achieve Educational Excellence in Australian Schools is an opportunity to open an important national discussion on the purposes of education.
‘Schools are undergoing rapid evolution due to escalating social and technological change,’ said Ms Blackwood. ‘This is not the time for schools and classroom practices to be viewed through the rear-view mirror, and a useful start for the panel could be to determine whether The Melbourne Declaration on Educational Goals for Young Australians still represents the full compass of our aspirations for educational excellence in schools.’
Ms Blackwood said AHISA hoped the panel’s deliberations would be informed by four key understandings:
- Recognition of teachers’ and school leaders’ professional expertise
- Recognition that most schools are already operating strategically within a continuous cycle of development or improvement
- Recognition of the value of school leaders’ autonomy in determining the best strategies at any particular point in time in a school’s cycle of development
- Recognition that NAPLAN and PISA tests are very narrow measures of the capacities of students and of what schools actually do.
‘We are encouraged that people with valuable school leadership experience are represented on the panel,’ said Ms Blackwood. ‘We look forward to engaging with the Review.’