Academics’ view of NAPLAN

 Distinguished Guest Writers

 The Treehorn Express

‘The Treehorn Express is a tribute to those children who are forced to encounter Standardised Blanket Testing in GERM countries and are forced to suffer from distress, a narrowed curriculum and loss of progressive cognitive development. Like little Treehorn, they are wonderful young citizens, ignored by those who are expected to care and exploited by those who don’t.



Treehorn is that little fellow with the bright green skin, just under your nose, appealing to you to take notice of him.


 David Hornsby of Literacy Educators added this declaration to his telling Submission No. 35 made to the recent unnoticed Senate Committee of Inquiry into the effectiveness of NAPLAN. You are strongly advised to check with . It’s a treasure trove of information.



Letter of support from academics for the “say no to naplan” campaign.

We are a group of Australian academics teaching in universities. As a group we are appalled at the way in which the Commonwealth government has moved to a high stakes testing regime in the form of NAPLAN, despite international evidence that such approaches do not improve children’s learning outcomes.

To date there has been little informed debate in this country about the use of NAPLAN as a measure of student (and teacher) academic achievement. These tests have little merit given they focus on assessment of learning rather than assessment for learning and they are being misused for a variety of political agendas.

Pressure on teachers and children to perform well on NAPLAN tests is narrowing the curriculum and eroding time in classrooms for quality teaching and learning activities. Conservative estimates of this testing regime – which only provides a snapshot of a student’s progress in some aspects of literacy and numeracy at one point in time – are around $100 million annually. Such funding could and should be used more appropriately to meet the needs of children experiencing learning difficulties.

 CURRENT SIGNATORIES (more adding each day)

Nerissa Albon, Monash University

Assoc Prof Michael Anderson, University of Sydney

Julie Anderson, RMIT University

Prof Lawrie Angus, University of Ballarat

Assoc Prof Peter Aubusson, University of Technology, Sydney

Dr Glenn Auld, Deakin University

Assoc Prof Jon Austin, University of Southern Queensland

Dr Bill Baker, University of Tasmania

Prof Catherine Beavis, Griffith University

Dr Adam Bertram, Monash University

Dr Kerry Bissaker, Flinders University

Assoc Prof Janette Bobis, University of Sydney

Dr Kate Brass, University of Ballarat

Dr Margarita Breed, RMIT University

Prof Marie Brennan, Victoria University

Martyn Brogan, Victoria University

Assoc Prof Penny Bundy, Griffith University

Dr Jenene Burke, University of Ballarat

Dr Peter Burridge, Victoria University

Andrea Burton, Griffith University

Assoc Prof Brian Cambourne, University of Wollongong

Julie Carmel, RMIT University

Nicky Carr, RMIT University

Assoc Prof Annemaree Carroll, University of Queensland

Dr Barbara Chancellor, RMIT University

Garry Collins, Australian Catholic University

Assoc Prof Maxine Cooper, University of Ballarat

Dr Suzanne Covich, Edith Cowan University WA

Dr Russell Cross, University of Melbourne

Dr Michael Crowhurst, RMIT University

Dr Lexi Cutcher, Southern Cross University

Assoc Prof Gloria Dall-Alba, University of Queensland

Dr Ann Davies, University of New South Wales

Dr Robert Davis, University of Ballarat

Prof Chris Davison, University of New South Wales

Prof Brenton Doecke, Deakin Univeristy

Assoc Prof Shelley Dole, University of Queensland

Dr Debra Edwards, La Trobe University

Dr Jennifer Elsden-Clifton, RMIT University

Prof Marie Emmitt, Australian Catholic University

Prof Robyn Ewing, University of Sydney

Dr Beryl Exley, Queensland University of Technology

Dr Julie Faulkner, Monash University

Assoc Prof Heather Fehring, RMIT University

Sylvana Fenech, RMIT University

Dr Annette Foley, University of Ballarat

Debi Futter-Puati, RMIT University

Prof Trevor Gale, Deakin University

Dr Robyn Gibson, University of Sydney

Andrew Gilbert, RMIT University

(Hon) A Prof Libby Gleeson, University of Sydney

Prof Barry Golding, University of Ballarat

Dr Emily Gray, RMIT University

Dr Peter Grootenboer, Griffith University

Prof Susan Groundwater-Smith, University of Sydney

Dr Cathryn Hammond, University of South Australia

Dr Mary Hanrahan, RMIT University

Dr Alan Hill, University of Tasmania

Cameron Hindrum, University of Tasmania

Dr Steven Hodge, University of Ballarat

Dr Eileen Honan, University of Queensland

Dr Neil Hooley, Victoria University

Anne Houghton, RMIT University

Dr Kerry Howells, University of Tasmania

Dr Mary Ann Hunter, University of Tasmania

Dr Kirsten Hutchison, Deakin University

Anita Jetnikoff, Queensland University of Technology

Dr Jenny Johnston, Southern Cross University

Dr Robbie Johnston, University of Tasmania

Jorge Jorquera, Victoria University

Dr Jayne Keogh, Griffith University

Dr Lisa Kervin, University of Wollongong

Assoc Prof Tony Kruger, Victoria University

Dr Gloria Latham, RMIT University

Anya Latham, RMIT University

Assoc Prof Rosie Le Cornu, University of South Australia

Dr Lynette Longaretti, RMIT University

Dr Pam Macintyre, University of Melbourne

Assoc Prof Liz Mackinlay, University of Queensland

Dr Amanda McGraw, University of Ballarat

Dr Kelli McGraw, Queensland University of Technology

Dr Mary-Rose McLaren, Victoria University

Jan McLean, University of NSW

Dr Jessica Mantei, University of Wollongong

Assoc Prof Jackie Manuel, University of Sydney

Dr Genee Marks, University of Ballarat

Dr Kathy Mills, Queensland University of Technology

Dr Paul Molyneux, University of Melbourne

Dr Greg Neal, Victoria University

Marion Nicolazzo, University of Melbourne

Prof Andrea Nolan, Victoria University

Dr Joanne O’Mara, Deakin University

Dr Kerry-Ann O’Sullivan, Macquarie University

Dr Graham Parr, Monash University

Dr Rachel Patrick, RMIT University

Dr Louise Phillips, University of Queensland

Dr Marc Pruyn, Monash University

Terri Redpath, Deakin University

Prof Alan Reid AM, University of South Australia

Dr Kerry Renwick, Victoria University

Rowena Riek, Griffith University

Roy Rozario, Monash University

Kathy Rushton, University of Sydney

Susan Rutherford, Monash University

Dr Ann Ryan, University of Ballarat

Dr Mary Ryan, Queensland University of Technology

Bronwyn Ryrie Jones, RMIT University

Hon Assoc Ken Searle, University of Sydney

Dr Marg Sellers, RMIT University

Dr Cheryl Semple, RMIT University

Assoc Prof Geoff Shacklock, RMIT University

Simon Shaw, University of Tasmania

Andrew Skourdoumbis, RMIT University

Catherine Smyth, University of Sydney

Dr John Smyth, University of Ballarat

Prof Alana Snyder, Monash University

Bill Spence, University of Sydney

Dr Madonna Stinson, Griffith University

Elly Thomson, RMIT University

Prof Georgina Tsolidis, University of Ballarat

Dr Jan Turbill, University of Wollongong

Dr Mark Vicars, Victoria University

Jo Virgona, RMIT University

Dr Jana Visnovska, University of Queensland

Dr Mary Weaven, Victoria Univerity

Hon Assoc Nadia Wheatley, University of Sydney

Lyn Wilkinson, Flinders University

Jo Williams, Victoria University

Dr Jacqueline Wilson, University of Ballarat

Assoc Prof Margaret Zeegers, University of Ballarat

Dr Lew Zipin, Victoria University

Dr David Zyngier, Monash University




 NOTE : A National Conference of Literacy Educators is being held at QUT, Brisbane this week-end. Reports have indicated that “…there is nothing but negative comments about NAPLAN testing at the conference. Even the keynote speakers have expressed their concern or their disgust.”




  Phil Cullen No. 83

A.M., A.Ed., B.Ed., Dip.Ed.Admin. M.Ed.Admin[Hons],

Former Q’ld Director of Primary Education,



Founder:Treehorn Express,


Primary School Principal 23 years

41 Cominan Avenue, Banora Point 2486

07 5524 6443 


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