Protecting bad teachers produces chronic failure

Social Justice Concerns

Helen Hughes and Mark Hughes  From: The AustralianMarch 09, 2011

MY School confirms that funding is not the cause of indigenous educational failure.

Take two schools in very remote Australia, 20km apart: in 2009, the indigenous school received recurrent funding of almost $33,000 a student, while the mainstream school received about $21,000 for each student.

Despite the 50 per cent additional funding, the indigenous school’s Year 5 National Assessment Program: Literacy and Numeracy reading result (typical of all of its results) was a failure rate of 92 per cent. The nearby non-indigenous school had a failure rate of 12 per cent.

These rates are representative of the higher funding but dramatically lower literacy and numeracy performance of indigenous schools.

School size is also not the reason for educational failure. Many small non-indigenous schools perform well and some of the worst performing indigenous schools have large enrolments. For example a…

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