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For 20 years our students have been slipping - but money is not the answer

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Earlier this week, the 2018 Program for International Student Assessment, or PISA, report was
released. There is no sugar coating what it shows. For 20 years now, we have been on a steady
downward trajectory in the international student rankings.

The truth is that while Australia has a great education system, there are systemic problems that
need addressing if we are to rise back up to the top of the rankings.


We know that the problem is not funding. Under Gonski 1.0 – and now under Gonski 2.0 – schools
have more money than ever before. Not only do they have money – but this money is distributed
according to need, with the most money going to the most disadvantaged schools.

The bigger challenge lies elsewhere. There are three areas in particular we have to look at: curriculum, teacher quality, and our philosophical approach to learning.

With regard to curriculum, it is clear that we must focus on the basics of numeracy and literacy, and
we must ensure that what is being taught in the classroom reflects evidence-based best practice. The gradual overcrowding of the........

© The Age