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Aus: 'Coalition pledges phonics check for Year 1 students and cut in teacher red tape'

Posted: Fri May 10, 2019 10:10 am
by Debbie_Hepplewhite
It's really good to hear of at least one political party committed to the implementation of a national Year 1 phonics check as reported in The Australian.

Note, also, the commitment to work with higher education providers to include phonics in teaching courses (last paragraph): ... 75bdd97064

Coalition pledges phonics check for Year 1 students and cut in teacher red tape

by Rebecca Urban

A re-elected Coalition government will make targeted investments in education in areas of need — funding a phonics check for Year 1 students and ensuring that university education faculties teach the evidence-backed method of early literacy instruction, according to its education policy unveiled today.
It has also promised a national strategy to tackle the abuse of teachers in the classroom as well as a review to lift the burden of compliance and red tape, so teachers can focus on teaching, not paperwork.
In the wake of Labor’s big-spending pitch to voters, the Coalition has reminded voters that education spending is at record levels already, and that future investment will be tailored to addressing known issues within the education system.

It has also moved to undermine Labor’s pledge to boost public education spending by $16.1 billion, arguing that “the only time in the last decade that government school funding has been cut was under Labor”.
“Labor cannot be trusted with education,” the policy document says.

“When Labor was last in office, Bill Shorten as Education Minister cut $1.2 billion to schools through secret funding deals. In government Labor failed to provide ongoing or genuine needs-based school funding focused on students. And announced $6.6 billion in cuts to higher education.”

The Coalition has renewed its backing for a national phonics check to boost Australian students literacy rates. Its previous lobbying of state governments to adopt the checks has been ignored by all jurisdictions except South Australia.

It has committed $10.8 million to introduce a Year 1 voluntary phonics health check by establishing a freely-available online check that allows parents and teachers to “ensure their children are not falling behind”.
“We know that the basics are fundamental to a child’s future. Most importantly, if children struggle to learn to read, they will always struggle to learn by themselves,” the document says.

“We will also work with all higher education providers to include phonics in teaching courses so that new teachers are prepared, from day one in the classroom, to use these critical tools.”