Education Matters - News impacting schools, teachers and students

Queensland Schoolkids Win Tablet Rollout

Almost 14,000 secondary school students in Queensland will be the recipients of the largest deployment of Windows 8 tablets.

Valued at around $13 million, the deal will see a majority of Year 9 students receiving Acer Computer tablets running the new Microsoft operating system. Acer Australia National Education Sales Manager, Derek Walker, said that 11,327 units would be distributed to Year 9 students. The remaining 2665 units are to be distributed to other high schools. 

Education Income Falls Again As China Fees Down

Spending by Chines students fell by over 3% to $3.9 billion last year as Australia’s international education industry shrank to $15 billion.

China represented about 25% of total spending by foreign students. Taking into account tuition fees and living expenses, according to the Government agency, Australian Education International.

Although still the No.1 services export, Australia’s inbound education industry earned $700 million less in 2012 than the previous year. It still remains well below the 2009 peak of $17.6 billion. However experts believe that the inbound education market is near its bottom and poised for a recovery, which will be led by higher education. Mainly due to the fact that it offers a more streamlined visa processing and post study work rights.

Staying Longer At Work

Population scholar Peter McDonald has said that ‘ Australia is witnessing a dramatic increase in older workers as better-educated employees enter the labour market and take up physically undemanding jobs and reach their 60’s still with dependent children’.

In April of this year, almost 64 per cent of men aged 60-64 were in the labour force compared with 45 per cent in April 2000. In the same period, the participation of women in the same age group, grew from quarter to half.

Calls for Hindi to be included in Australian Curriculum

A vast untapped pool of skilled Indian migrants could be used to teach Hindi in Australian schools and universities, according to a new report.

The report, published by Australia India Institute, a Melbourne based think tank, argues for the inclusion of Hindi in the Australian school curriculum, saying that it should be an essential part of the Commonwealth’s Asia policy.

SA Teachers face new registration checks

Tighter screening checks are set to be introduced for those wanting to work in South Australian schools. Education Minister, Jennifer Rankine has said that people who have committed any of a wide range of offences will automatically be excluded from becoming teachers. While others may be banned on other grounds.

Currently people wanting to become a teacher have a criminal history check, but it is up to the Teachers Registration Board, whether they are registered. At present there are no offences that are prescribed as excluding someone from becoming a teacher. However a ‘prescribed offences list’ is to be established which would exclude people from teaching, while another list will presume exclusion, but appeals would be permitted.

South Australia close to signing up to Gonski

Gonski Review Update

South Australia is close to signing on to the Federal Government’s schools funding scheme, with Premier Jay Weatherill putting his support firmly behind the Gonski model. But as negotiations continue, the Labor leader is yet to commit the state to the plan.

Hoping to meet a June 30 deadline, the Premier declined to outline his concerns, but stated that he was ‘absolutely’ satisfied that South Australia would receive more money under the Gonski funding model.

NSW is so far, the only state to have signed on to the proposal. Which will provide an extra $14.5 billion in total over the next six years, plus indexation.