Does NAPLAN work?

Does NAPLAN Work?

Now that the anxious period of NAPLAN test-prep dominates the curriculum landscape, the kids are worried, the teachers are flurried and the playground talk is serious, there is one question that all politicians all principals, all education associations, all educational journalists must be asked:

Is NAPLAN doing what it is supposed to do?

OR….Are you still living with the promises of increasingly high achievement rates, high teacher enthusiasm, parent satisfaction, transparent operations?

Will you answer?

Should we do something about it?

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Phil Cullen  41 Cominan Avenue  Banora Point Australia 2486   07 5524 6443  0407865999   cphilcullen@bigpond.com   REFER: Who’s Who in Australiia

The hysterical history of our testucation system.

The Hysterical History of Australian Schooling

Important principles of school administration  have not changed much since the education industry was established in Australia. We still have a similar arrangement to what we had when we kicked off.  The monied gentry would tell the governor what they wanted and expect to get it.  They still do. They still rule. It’s easy to describe.

Mind you, there were no state schools providing free and compulsory schooling and those who came from the great Britain in earlier colonial times were used to an arrangement back home where churches and a few private societies supplied schools. The remnants of this system remain. There are public and private schools.

Rev. John Dunmore Lang was a big wheel in Sydney society in the 1830s, and a passionate educator, according to historian, David Hunt.  Lang was concerned by the increasing numbers of Irish bushrangers – The Wild Colonial Boy and his impoverished kind were becoming a real nuisance. “Lang, a Presbyterian minister hated Catholics and believed that they were conspiring to ‘rivet the chains of popery on a deluded people in the Australian colonies'”; so he started a school in 1826 to counter their influence.

The irreverent Hunt [“True Girt”]wrote : “The Church of England was the only church to have an official presence in NSW in the first decade of settlement and it hadn’t exactly set the colony alight. While the church half-heartedly provided a few schools, they were funded by the state, a radical departure from British practice.
In 1824, Governor Brisbane reported, ‘every murder or diabolical crime, which has been committed in the colony since my arrival, has been perpetrated by Irish Catholics’ . Believing strong moral leadership  from the church would reduce Catholic crime, Brisbane funded Therry’s schools.” (Fr. Therry was the first Catholic priest allowed to practice his faith in the colony and was keen to establish the schools for altruistic and religious purposes.) Believing  that strong moral leadership from the church would reduce Catholic crime, Brisbane funded Therry’s Catholic schools. He also partially financed the building of Australia’s first Catholic Church, given the impoverished state of the predominantly Irish Catholics, although he refused to pay for any over-the-top papist frou-frou.”

“This Catholic aid outraged Lang. The splenetic Scot complained that he was forced to give his sermons in a schoolhouse shared with diabolical papists, who assaulted his nostrils with their incense and his ears with their bell-ringing. Brisbane refused his demands for a government-subsidised church because the Scottish Presbyterians had enough cash hidden in their mattresses to build one themselves.”

What a diabolical setting it would have been for a  2010 Gillard-type ‘My School’ presentation!

“The arrival of Therry and Lang brought the long-dormant religious divisions of the old country to the surface,”  continued Hunt. “The Catholics hated the Anglicans for not permitting Catholic education in their schools; the Presbyterians hated the Catholics for receiving government support and for being Catholics and the Anglicans hated the Catholics and Presbyterians  for moving onto their turf. Sectarianism had stormed into the previously secular colony, its battlefield the hearts and minds of children.”

William Charles Wentworth was a key figure in the introduction of state education. Also, money was his God and he could not abide having the poor in any decision-making position. “People with property portfolios and sheep should be given the vote and people without them should not. The poor were not fit to determine the future of the colony, as ‘ignorance and poverty went together’. In the world of Wentworth’s faith, the moneychangers would be keepers of the Temple.” That’s how our super-elite took power, and the thought-bubbles that encourage such a point of view persist to the present day.  Schoolies are part of the poor and ignorant brigade.  They don’t count. The governance of the day and teacher groups will do as they are told by those who matter. ….and so say all of us….right through to today.   The notion of the schooling profession using its expertise to run schools all around the vast land to teach the children to read and write and calculate properly, was not on the agenda….the same as it is now….and, so, teachers just have to enjoy being the target of ingenuous, ignorant, dishonest, elitist nincompoopish criticism, because the self-important, very rich  cockalorums say so.

Part of the Gillard-Klein negotiations included the New York proposal that principals and teachers be sacked if their schools did not get decent results in set tests. It’s  still on the  klein/gillard agenda and will receive little oppositions from Australia’s meek and mild teacher groups when it becomes instituted. UBS [‘UBS’ is an anagram for all sorts of things] paid the fare of Joel Klein and his wife to come down under to proseltyse the values of whipping kids and teachers into shape, for money. He only spoke to big business and to their press at their club. We members of the poor and ordinary, bought it  all…big time.  UBS MEANS BIG, BIG POWER AND CONTROL, in case you want to know.   It owns us….well….our public-care institutions.

Ironically, Wentworth, at the time,  had an ally in the press. Horatio Spencer Howe Wills, publisher of The Gazette,  who joined with Willy and, together,  they founded The Australian Patriotic Association. “The membership fee of £5 kept the riffraff out and the association’s policy of denying the vote to poor people, blacks and women encouraged a number of the more progressive exclusives to join. Governors Bourke and Gipps lent their support…..”  and nothing much has changed to the present day. The denigration of the most important of the caring professions remains a feature of our schooling. 

In the mother country, popular education had to have a religious basis  In the Old Dart, the State started in 1833 to make contributions to schools started by the National Public Schools Association following heavy advocacy by secularist and those who hotly disputed the claims of the Church of England to be responsible for national education. As is usual in such cases, dispute  and conflict and dissatisfaction was maintained until Britain decided to establish a Department of Education in 1856.  A Royal Commission [ a certainty for Australiaeducation in a few years from now] was appointed in 1858. It found that churches had done a reasonable job, but, generally speaking the standard was too elementary and superficial….and children were leaving school too early to get a job. Disputes, conflict and dissatisfacton kept reigning. It was the period of Wentworth and Lang wrestling with Governors Bourke and Gipps in the colonies. Chaos and uncertainty. Schooling in Australia had no model , so we tolerated a kind of chaos – who does what to whom and who cares – free-wheeling = as it was in Britain.

Not only that. Since the state was paying grants to schools on a per capita basis, a mere numbering of attendees was unsatisfactory.  The pupils had to be up to scratch with their standards.  During this period, England’s Parliament introduced what they called a Revised Code. As Barnard [P.130] notes : The government will pay per capita grants to schools which had a satisfactory report from Her Majesty’s Inspector. These grants would be supplemented by local grants from county and borough rates. Thus was introduced the system of ‘payment by results’ which hampered the development of elementary education for many years to come.”  OMG! It lasted forty years....and our NAPLAN has been going for ten….which is certainly nine years too long.

“…the shortcomings of the Revised Code were clearly  seen by such educationists as Kay-Shuttleworth and Matthew Arnold; and subsequent history show the justice of their condemnation of it. The examination system resulted – as it so often does – on overpressure on children, due to the anxiety to produce ‘results’. The teaching of the three ‘Rs’ may have improved because teachers were tempted to concentrate on these grant-earning subjects and neglect other work; but this encouraged mechanical methods of teaching. The New Code also tended to demoralise the teacher. Their position in the eyes of their managers and therefore their very livelihood, might depend on the amount of the grant earned by their pupils. Hence there was a temptation to falsify registers and hoodwink inspectors by requiring pupils to learn off their reading book by heart. One of the inspectors stated that  he used to counteract this pratice by requiring pupils to read their book backwards. ‘

NAPLAN has returned us to the exigencies of The Revised Code…..with its over-pressure, anxiety and stress….way beyond blue.   We must wonder at the wisdom of those of the NAPLAN sect, who ignore the lessons of history. Their lack of classroom experience and ignorance of the psychology  of classroom behaviour does not do anything for Australian progress. We are driving at breakneck speed, using only the rear-vision mirror for guidance, backwards.

Put another way :- Once we arrive back at about the 1830’s standards …which shouldn’t be too long,…we will probably continue to exercise the tenants of the Kajabbi Complex. “The Kajabbi Complex is named the antics of after two notable Queensland  North  Westerners who  had had a successful day at the races at Kajabbi, not far from the Gulf of Carpentaria. The two  celebrated excessively, atthe bramble bar before  heading, late in the night, for their home town, Cloncurry.  They drove for hours and did not seem to be getting any closer.  They paused at a signpost to check things out. It said “6 Furlongs”. They had  been driving  in circles around the Kajabbi racetrack for hours…..around and around, as if the were NAPLAN testucators.

Sadly. the Revised Code lasted so long that its test-test-test cancer became part of the DNA of British-style schooling, despite the efforts of Matthew Arnold and superior educators of the time. Church schools applauded the rigours of testing, believing in the long run that preparation for tests was a holy mission and a legitimate enterprise. The Gradgrinds of the world thought it was Christmas all year. They could watch the kids squirm for months.  While western-style cultures have been praying for the ghost of Matthew Arnold to re-emerge, corporate bodies and other proponents of Gillard’s kleinism, have been burning effigies of him. He made too much common-sense for them…They just can’t comprehend that teachers make the most of child’s zest for learning by using the full range of teaching strategies [not just direct, chalk-talk didactic instruction];and there is no need to scare the living daylights out of them. Vision-impaired, these just wont see. They must believe that producing learners with top-level intellectual capacities is a communist plot or something and that the conventional target of producing mediocre scholars because we have always done that sort of thing and we should maintain the traditions. “Learning how to learn because we like it” must be  disgusting socialist stuff like they do in Finland up near those Commie countries.

Kleinists  want us to respect our heroes…..Thomas Gradgrind, Joel Klein himself, Rupert Murdoch, Julia Gillard  and Simon Birmingham as they thunder down the stretch of the Kajabbi racetrack heading for the next round – not knowing how far to go nor where they are heading – charter schools, Year 1 Tests, full school testing, dumbing down test levels, computer testing, pre-graduation testing, sacking principals, sacking teachers, appointing big named sciolists to administrative positions; all floating around as ‘different’ ideas. Your local member will fit in with them, if he/she doesn’t have a mind of their own. It’s all yet to come.

London to a brick.

Aussies seem struck with a special kind of attitude, born of an hysterical past. Right?

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BREAKING NEWS

NAPLAN victims of stress, anxiety, depression and sleeplessnes will be relieved to learn that Ms. Julia Gillard, co-founder of our kleinist system of schooling, is taking control of the organisation that works towards the relief for sufferers from stress, anxiety and depression.

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Phil Cullen 41 Cominan Avenue  Banora Point  Australia 2486  07 5524644  0407865999  cphilcullen@bigpond.com      REFER: Who’s Who in Australia

 

Noplan claims another victim

A TREEHORN MESSAGE

NAPLAN/NOPLAN CLAIMS ANOTHER VICTIM – SCIENCE

Noplan, controller of Australian school standards, has done it again.  Determined to maintain a fear-laden testing base to Australia’s education system, it has added to a world wide school reputation that we can do without.

NAPLAN is the absolute, unquestioned, only cause of our ‘falling standards’. Yes. It is!

Once amongst the top dogs in the world-wide PISA contests and others, we are now 14th in Science, 16th in Reading, 25th in Maths out of 72 competing countries. Statisticians tell us that we are behind Asian countries, whom we once helped with their schooling problems.

What has happened to us?

Simple…..the children don’t like doing tests nor getting ready for them. It’s boring and unpleasant and not part of proper schooling. Our pupils are telling us to ‘…cut it out. We want to learn.’  We overdo it. As plain as the nose on your face, it’s clear that we are turning our kids off learning…..off schooling..

Noplan is a prismatic disaster.  It’s a failure, no matter which way you look at it.   Instead of provoking industry and scholastic effort, it creates dislike for subjects that, scholastically,  crave loving, fearless attention and spirit and challenge……not being belted around the place, used as weapons of  fear and anxiety and distaste.

Suppose you lived overseas [e.g. P.N.G.],would you, as a concerned parent, send your child to Australia for schooling?  If you wanted a complete, total, holistic, proper education for your child, would you send him or her to a school that claimed notoriety through its NAPLAN scores?

What is wrong with an education system that starts with the requirements of the child?
What is wrong with an education system that tries to satisfy each child’s zest for learning?
What is wrong with an education system that puts no limit on a child’s achievements?
What is wrong with an education system that develops learning habits that last a lifetime?
What is wrong with us?

What is learning?  What is schooling.  Don’t know?
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Phil Cullen  41 Cominan Avenue Banora Point Australia 2486  07 5524 6443   0407865999   cphilcullen@bigpond.com

As we move closer to May 9 the day of attrition

Back to ‘Comments on Comments’ soon.

NOPLAN DAY IS NOT FAR AWAY
Time for the wise to withdraw their children.

As Australia moves forward to one of the most important days on its socio-political calendar – the first day of what is now called, The Noplan Tests, we need to consider the climate in which our present system exists. A drum-roll for those who are forced to head for the learning gallows on May 9 to do the tests!

The Climate

* Schooling movements in Australia are moving further away from democratic principles and it is noticeable.

*Australian politicians do not know how to prepare for the future ….the future of work, of living; a future  of doing better at anything we do.

*Australians do not have the courage to stand up to corporate lobbyists who are now determining our  children’s future.

* The obstacles to a healthy school-learning culture are political, not educational.

* The unscrupulous domination of the greedy  controls our entire schooling system.

* Our obedience to the desires of vested interests keeps us from discussing what is important.

*The elements of the devices used to control basic principles of learning, contain their own form of decadence.  [Children fail NAPLAN because of NAPLAN.]

*The greatest social and industrial handicap to Australia’s future is NOPLAN.  Naplan is a noplan. It’s a political curse for which Australia will pay dearly.

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Keeping in mind that the most esteemed educational practitioner of the 20th century, Sir Alec Clegg, said: 
there are two kinds of education: the education of the mind by imparting facts and teaching skills, and the education of the spirit … the child’s loves and hates, his hopes and fears, or in other terms, his courage, his integrity, his compassion and other great human qualities.

Australia has the capacity to have both for its pupils. We are willing and able to do things properly, if we are allowed.. Sir Alec’s little homily is appropriate….
When Michelangelo was going to Rome to see the Pope prior to his being employed to build the great dome of St Peter’s and paint the Sistine Chapel, he took a reference with him which said: The bearer of these presents is Michelangelo the sculptor. His nature is such that he requires to be drawn out by kindness and encouragement. If love be shown him and he be treated really well, he will accomplish things that will make the whole world wonder.

Every child is a  Michangelo  if we believe in the worth of our children.
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Sadly, the climate of Australian schooling is certainly not conducive to child  care, progress and welfare. Aussies prefer that their teachers exert fear and worry and anxiety so they can pass tests.

The Child

* There is good in every child no matter how slow, damaged, ill-favoured or despised by others.

* Children will work to the limit of their abilities.

* All children matter.

* Happy relationships between school administrators, parents, teachers and pupils are extremely important.

* The life of every child is enriched by the development of its creative powers.

* Love and encouragement and having fun at school are much more important than fear and anxiety.

* Children need care-based pupilling rather than fear-based hard instruction and repetitive test-prep.

* Teachers need as much support as pupils. Both thrive on recognition.

Australians, however,  prefer to believe that children go to school to pass tests and examinations; and play sport. Nothing else.

The School

* definitions are clear and meaningfully used

* all adults on the campus think about their place in the scheme of things.

* thinking time is part of each person’s timetable.

* all members concentrate total effort on the improvement of teaching and learning techniques.

* progress through school is marked by increasing joy in the acts of learning as new thresholds are crossed. Such thresholds are not  marked by school years but by growth in experiences.  Schooling is fun.

* there is plenty of shared opinions about activities and efforts. The sharing of helpful opinion represent the limit of evaluation processes, because increases in learning joy would be the aim of any learning conversations. Shared opinions would lead to positive forms of self-evaluation.

* Oracy is part of the every-day time-table.

* ways  are found to develop talents as part of the normal learning process.

Times for unique interests are found but not over-ritualised.

Pupils  exit school with a greater love for some skill or interest of a particular kind than they had when they started.

 When decisions have to be made [e.g. whether to do Noplan tests]  they are based on a simple Four Way Test, not unlike the Rotary Test:

1. Does it help children to learn better?

2. Does it help teachers to teach better ?

3. Does it economise on efforts in the teaching/learning acts ?

4. Does it provide the greatest good for the greatest number ?

When you have the pupil in the middle of your eye, you can’t miss describing an effective, quality institution.

You end up describing joy in the processes of learning, growth in the quest for learning how to learn, and high satisfaction in achievement.

HOW DOES THE 4-WAY TEST APPLY TO NOPLAN? WHAT DO YOU THINK? Comments?                                                                                                                                                  _______________________________________________________________________________________________                                                                                                                                                                              Phil Cullen 41 Cominan Avenue Banora Point Australia 2486  07 5524 6443  0407865999  cphilcullen@bigpond.com  REFER: Who’s Who in Australia

Treehorn: Comments on Comments

COMMENTS ON COMMENTS

“NAPLAN is an optional extra – like Religious Instruction and School Excursions – which should require the approval of parents for children to participate. Its threatening impact on children’s mental health is too serious to slap on top of a regular learning curriculum just to provide data for a politically-inspired institution…..and then ‘allow’ parents to withdraw if they want!!”

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MUST READ : https://theconversation.com/parents-shouldnt-rely-on-my-school-data-when-choosing-a-school-for-their-child-74301?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Latest%20from%20The%20Conversation%20for%20March%2014%202017%20-%2069605203&utm_content=Latest%20from%20The%20Conversation%20for%20March%2014%202017%20-%2069605203+CID_e20578e1e46fd4f0c1cf16bb09133841&utm_source=campaign_monitor&utm_term=Parents%20shouldnt%20rely%20on%20My%20School%20data%20when%20choosing%20a%20school%20for%20their%20child

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Ray Armstrong adds to the previous Treehorn Express. Please feel free to add your own.

“Serious consideration must be given to the abolition of the NOPLAN (literacy and numeracy) tests unless changes are made, mainly because  any “results” are invalid. If the tests are to be kept, then they must be administered in a scientific way, not the ad hoc system that now exists. 

For all intents and purposes, they are standardized tests which are unfortunately not administered in a standardized manner. Any Psychology 101 student could tell you this, yet the government persists with them. If you want reliable results, the way the tests are organized must be changed.

No valid conclusions can be from tests that ignore accepted procedure. 

The way the tests are administered leaves them open to manipulation and interference. When millions of dollars of taxpayers’ money is distributed on the basis of the test results, a more serious approach should be given to their implementation. 

For a start, the tests should not be given by the classroom teacher who has a vested interest in the results. A suitably trained anonymous person like a school counsellor should be engaged. With teachers increasingly ‘teaching to the tests’, settings ‘trial tests’ for weeks before, it is critical that these tests be administered by a person not known to the children and from outside the school

With this in mind, I was more than pleased to observe  that Angelo Gavrielatos of the Australian Education Union, has said teachers should boycott the tests. Many schools teachers “help” their children in order to boost their own standing, their school’s and any grant increases that may result as a spinoff from the tests. Only recently there were media reports of schools that had extraordinary improvements in their results over previous poor scores with no reasonable explanation. The answer is obvious to opponents of NOPLAN. Would you all like to see the HSC tests given out by the classroom teacher? I think not.

If you want to know how your child is progressing visit your school, talk with your child’s teacher, become engaged with your child’s school

The Naplan tests should be abolished. They are a waste of money. The money should be diverted to schools and their more immediate needs. The tests damage children and there is no research that demonstrates they do any good. In fact they do great harm. The time devoted to ‘teaching to the tests’ could be used in more creative educational pursuits.

Sadly, Governments will persist with NOPLAN until? Well I will tell you! Until a few of them have their seats threatened. As soon as politicians see there is even the slightest chance of losing their seats as a result of their obsession with NOPLAN only then will they act. This will mean groups like Treehorn will have to be more organized, address parental groups, communicate with other educational organizations (Principals’ Councils, P&C’s) and seek funding. ”

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Richard Flint, former army officer,  offered some advice to teachers….

“All who want to be better teachers. Never mind the wordy talk about NAPLAN. Teach better where ever you are..

No such a thing as bad students , only bad teachers.

To improve student performance ,increase teacher skill

Good teachers are expert in skills to impart knowledge to students. Student learn little if left to themselves.

Teachers can only teach approved doctrine. Most professions determine the minimum standard for licence or registration as a practitioner.

Education is too important to be left to teachers alone. The community determines what it wants its inhabitants to know.

There has always been examinations, usually annually, to allow to students to rise to the next age level. Didn’t have a fancy name in the past.

Difficulty is experienced creating a syllabus for Australia wide use.  For example, Darwin has difference to Melbourne for ethnic reasons. Rural is different to urban.

An examination can only be successful if it tests all the salient points of a subject.

Students tested a half an hour after the teaching session only remember some of the subject, results  are worse later. Revision is essential.

Last but not least. The only way to success in learning is to instil motivation. Students don’t learn if they don’t want to.”

R.S.Flint   AM, Brigadier (Ret) – Former Director General of Army Training and Education

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Stan Price, ex-teacher, differentiates between schools.

“We have a differentiated school system in Australia.
1. There are the NAPLAN-conditioned ones which care more about the test results than about the substance of school learning.
2. There are the learning focussed schools who teach children and tolerate the nuisance interruption of Naplan.
3. There are anti-NAPLAN schools which openly discuss the effects of Naplanning on their learning philosophy , and encourage dissent.

It’s too confusing.
I’d like to send my daughter to the third kind that openly discusses issues such as NAPLAN’S effects on learning, but there aren’t any handy.”

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Connie,Assistant Principal says.
“I don’t know what we will do this year during the change-over to computerised testing.  We don’t have enough computers now, so I guess special arrangements will be made.
Our suburb is not high on the socio-economic scale and our children are not used to computers.  Will the tests be modified to  cater for the confusion to come?  If so, what use will the test results then be?

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Treehorn’s 
article on ‘Attitude’in January 2017 applies:
Monopath, Julia Gillard, representing our entrenched screwball attitude to schooling when she chose the Klein system of fear-based learning in 2007, did so with confidence that Australia’s attitude to schooling and scoring is of the bang-crash-wallop-fear kind. Attitude! With her attitude embedded in looking for a malevolent solution rather than a tender, inclusive one for Australia to conduct an  evaluation of its schooling system, she only went for one extreme view. She only looked at one, using the Stuart Firestein technique of ‘farting around in the dark’, and she grabbed the kind her friend Kevin wanted. Since then, of course, it has been shown that she boo-booed,  that the use of NAPLAN testing to judge the standard of schooling is the work of fools, but we are stuck with it because she and her political and corporate friends said that we must do as we are told….despite our professional desires to exert true ethics and esoteric knowledge that will benefit children…..and avoiding the kind of  serious damage that NAPLAN inflicts.

It’s

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Phil Cullen 41 Cominan Avenue Banora Point Australia 2486   07 5524 6443  0407865999  cphilcullen@bigpond.com REFER :Who’s Who in Australia.

NAPLAN is NOPLAN – A commentary

 

A COMMENTARY

This is an invitation to readers of The Treehorn Express to comment on the comments and examine the ‘credentials’ of NAPLAN testing in more depth than we have in the past.  First…

THE STORY

1. Former NSW primary principal, Ray Armstrong forwarded ‘Treehorn’ the copy of the interview conducted by a radio station in Victoria concerning the recently released results on the NAPLAN tests, and forwarded in the Treehorn Express on 9 March.

Ray:

……and listen to the attached audio….former school Principal John Nelson exposes NOPLAN

A national breakdown of school results shows a lack of improvement in numeracy and literacy levels of some high school level students. The data has been released today on the MySchool website, the one-stop online portal for parents to monitor schools’ performance. One former Victorian school leader who resigned over a NAPLAN controversy, thinks the flat line trend points to a need to lift both teaching and student standards.

  1. I thanked Ray in the following way…

    Phil:
    Thanks Ray…….from Treehorn.

    Looks like the State Control of Learning is a flop. Teaching is best left to Teachers, free to expand pupils’ learning to the limit…ignoring the political pursuit of naplan mediocrity. 

    Q.E.D.  “What was to be was demonstrated.”

    The Fallacy of Hegemonic Dominance certainly applies.

    3. This provoked Paul Wildman to comment in the following manner; and it is Paul’s observations that I should like to use to provoke further discussion.

    Paul:

Phil and Ray well done.  A few comments please –

Ray’s conceptual understanding of NAPLAN (and yours Phil to a point) is still quite narrow. The solution will be in our techno-utopian mind set will be More Of The Same that is more and intense NAPLAN applied by computers and discipline, funding loss, fiscal corporal punishment, so to speak, if failure occurs will expand exponentially.  Our culture is, I submit from a political perspective, only interested in the scientific-technical side of things not the socio side of things i.e. seeing schooling as a socio-technical exercise as per the late great Aust systems theorist Fred Emery.

NAPLAN is actually emerging as a complete alternative pedagogical world that is part of Big Business just like Big Pharma and Big Brother – in fact in NSW from next year you can’t sit for your senior certificate if you haven’t got an ‘8’ in NAPLAN – can you/we see how the Western Anglo mindset reproduces itself herein.  NAPLAN has now become THE pedagogical system for Australia NOT conventional subjects etc.  And this is just the beginning.

As with the EPA and FDA in the US we see what in ancient Greek is called ‘enantiodromia’ where the opposite is achieved to what is set out to do.  So these US bodies, by their decisions and actions (not their public remit) are now responsible for increasing pollution and increasing obesity and cancer in particular, respectively.  So, I fear, it is thus with Education Big Ed as it may be called.

Stopping NAPLAN and continuing say schools, centralised curriculum, hierarchical power over systems therein, Nation State based, same age cohort class groups, exclusion of community from pedagogy will solve only part of our dilemma as schools themselves are as we discussed simply antiquated machines for producing factory fodder for industries of yesteryear (indeed our whole Governance structure is similarly outdated) – now universities are the same mix – right down to Kindy curricula all decided centrally by the elite and all based on this failing user pays system.

You Phil support the work of school inspectors. I submit the inspectorate as a whole, functioned as a surveillance mechanism for the elite – which you were part of.   Systems wise the momentum was and is, in Anglo countries, only towards NAPLAN and its intensification within Anglo Nation States.

I welcome discussion of these broader issues as well as NAPLAN.

Ciao paul

Wildman, P. (1998). Biting the Bullet with Fred Emery. Futures, 30(6), Second Thoughts section: 573-583.

Wildman, P. e. (1998). A Retrospective on Fred Emery. Futures (August), 30(6), 573-584.

Paul Wildman  (1) Our future is not ours to colonise but is loaned to us by our grandchildren. (2) Scale needs to be sensitive enough to pick up context.Go CRAFT! crafters-connect.com . Go kids and adults learning kal.net.au  . Go the Bush Mechanic bushie.weekly.com  Brisbane LETS No: 140 Mob: 0412027818   KALGROVE Pty Ltd. Attn. P Wildman. PO 73 Northgate Brisbane 4013 Australia. NB: unless specifically and previously agreed emails cannot be assumed to be confidential.

  1. Paul’s observations needs further discussion. I’d like to start.

Phil:

  Paul’s observations are accepted without equivocation. The narrowness of my [aka Treehorn’s] crusade to get rid of NAPLAN, was confined to the criticisms of the macho-seditious way that it was introduced, the meek acceptance of the scheme by ‘education’ groups, the use of fear as a motivational instrument of learning, the deceitfulness of keeping parents’ democratic rights hidden from them.   I tried to concentrate on the lack of humanity in our treatment of children and the basic stupidity of NAPLAN.  Tough luck.  I just didn’t do any good.

As Paul suggests, the use of NAPLAN tests has initiated a new pedagogical system for Australia and my thin, weak  form of argument has been too focussed on its effects on the mental health and educative progress of young children…and little else.  Indeed, I thought that little else would be necessary, to have it banned,  but I was wrong. I have received a big red F for my efforts, and my stubbornness has not helped. I overplayed the criticism of kleinist attitudes. I guess I thought that I could crack the style of Aussie casual indifference to such schooling; and that every primary school principal in Australia would adopt my point of view;  but I couldn’t and didn’t.  We should now -at this present time in history – be undergoing a monumental shift from traditional pedagogy and the malpractice of  learning/testing traditional techniques to an unfulfilled urgent need for a nation of self-determined learners who can adjust to the dark side of corporate ideologies. THERE IS A SERIOUS  NEED TO DISCUSS THIS. WE NEED A RENEWED FOCUS ON SCHOOLING. AS AN ISSUE, IT IS BIG.

Curriculum issues have been limited to accountability, diagnosis and remediation.  We have dwelt on problem-solving related only to data gathering and  the passing of  tests, instead of enabling the young to be proactive in their efforts to make sense of a rapidly changing, innovative world. We need to talk about a curriculum that will help them to cope, but we seem to be prohibited from talking about it at length.  As we move from a pedagogy based on ‘teacher knows all’  and will teach children what they should know  and an andragogy that promotes more personal responsibility for learning and liking it, through to a future of heutagogical learning styles that will be essential for survival, there is no place for stupidities like NAPLAN. It had its day in 2009 when we learned about its seductive sabotage of basic child rights and its seditious intent, well described by Paul. It’s still around doing its damage and it shouldn’t be.

Within the profession, there is a critical need for a deep discussion on professional ethics and their relationship to UNESCO’s Rights of the Child. Why isn’t there a Code of Conduct that relates to them?  Do teachers observe a professionally initiated Code of Conduct or a bureaucratic Code of Control concocted by sciolist bureaucrats?  Are we, as Paul suggests, running schools that  are “….simply antiquated machines producing factory fodder for industries of yesteryear..”

When Bill Ford [1997] said that we should prefer ‘knowledge sharing’ rather than ‘knowledge hoarding’, Hase and Kenyon* said, ” In this respect heutagogy [i.e. self-directed learning] looks to the future in which knowing how to learn will be a fundamental skill given the pace of innovation and the changing structure of communities and workplaces”

While we have always spoken blithely about the need for pupils to ‘learn how to learn’, Australia has yet to discuss the kinds of pedagogy that work to set children on their learning trail from Year 1. Australia has also yet to discuss its casual indifference to schooling and learning matters and especially its toleration of the abuse of children’s mental health through the creation of fear and anxiety in the classroom.  Why do Aussie adults prefer to ignore serious issues such as these? How can we continue to tolerate the distress and anxiety it causes to almost every pupil…the suicides and the like? Would anybody notice if fictitious Treehorn regrew to his normal height and then turned a livid green..he did, and still is..[That message didn’t get through either, did it?] …..or notice that NAPLAN is failing with Greek ‘enantiodromiac’ spirit ? Will ‘Noticing’  itself ever become a syllabus requirement?  Did Aussies notice that Paul’s ‘enantiodromia’ was the main feature of  the most recent NAPLAN results.  The fear element was supposed to produce better results, but it took control of the contestants attitude to learning.  Learning, after all, is an individual act and you will not make me learn if I don’t want to. The pupils reacted to the last NAPLAN test in a very noticeable way….but….did we notice?  They reversed the intention. The next trick is for testucating sciolists to dumb down all future tests [if we are silly enough to persist with them] to ensure better scores on My School noticeboard. Who cares? Who would notice?

*Google: From Andragogy to Heutagogy by Stewart Hase & Chris Kenyon (2001) USC

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Phil Cullen 41 Cominan Avenue Banora Point 2486 07 5524 6443  0407865999 cphilcullen@bigpond.com  REFER: ‘Who’s Who in Australia’
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The Fallacy of NAPLAN’s Hegemonic Dominance

IT’S NAPLAN SEASON.  NORMAL SCHOOLING WILL RESUME ON MONDAY 15 MAY

 

THE FALLACY OF NAPLAN’S HEGEMONIC DOMINANCE

The manipulation by the ruling class of  developmental values that are

contrary to the authenticated needs of children (Maslow),

through the elite’s establishment

of a State Theory of Learning.

based on shaky quantitative measurement,

ensures a long-lasting  cultural hegemony

that seriously impedes wise and democratic decision-making procedures.

Maslow’s description of the motivational factors that spur people on to greater things, has been established, uncontested, for over half-a-century.  This five-stage model  of ‘growth needs’ arranged in hierarchical order which indicates that particular needs have to be satisfied before those higher in the pyramid of needs can be fulfilled.

NAPLAN applies  official indifference to the second rung of the ladder by attacking a child’s security and mental confidence with tests in the first year of schooling. Then, at about seven years of age, a crucial stage of a child’s development, it threatens, with totalitarian command, the warmth of friendly teaching/learning relationships with the rigours and anxiety of stern testing procedures.

It deliberately  establishes anxiety as a school requirement. A child’s Esteem needs are ignored so the chances of reaching their full potential are  seriously hindered. Most Australian children have Buckley’s chance of reaching their complete self-fulfilment while NAPLAN exists.

The lack of humanity shown by our political schadenfreudists borders on sadomachicism. They should know as well as any other sadist that the extremely  well researched dictum: ” The more any quantitative social indicator is used for social decision making, the more subject it will be to corruption pressures and the more apt it will be to distract and corrupt the social processes it is intended to monitor.” [Campbell] is real.    Last year’s PISA and TIMSS failures and NAPLAN’s flat-lining bear testimony to this.  As Goodhart’s Law also emphasises “When a measure becomes a target, it ceases to be a good measure.”….which gives credence to the prediction that NAPLAN will be dumbed down this year so that better scores can be obtained.

The use of NAPLAN as a cultural weapon of control over the democratic elements of schooling reveals a level of corruption and deceit that Australian schooling is unused to.

BEWARE

AUSTRALIA’S STATE LAWS OF SCHOOLING. [Developed and installed by Naplan experts]

Since life is linear, learning is linear. School subjects are linear, ordered and hierarchical within and between themselves.

Each subject is unique to itself and must be kept isolated from all others. Some are more important than others. The Vaccination Theory of Learning* applies.

Regular testing controls all school learnings. Tests do not need to be reliable nor valid.
Anxiety creation and the threat of fear of testing results are the essential elements of all learning processes.

All scores obtained by testing are to be officially regarded as reliable indicators of [a] a child’s potential for a happy and successful future, [b] growth in intellectual capacity, [c] creativity potential, [d] how well he or she learns,[e] how each pupil learns [f] how much is learned, [g] teacher ability.

Only a compulsory three-day rigorous workout once every two years can reveal how well each of these traits have been taught.

Humiliation of teachers and pupils is sanctioned as a motivational device.

Testing also shows how well children are taught, the organisational quality of school leadership, the curriculum leadership of the school authority; and the suitability of the curriculum content.

Standardised blanket testing such as NAPLAN has powers beyond the comprehension of the average human being. They should not enquire.

If learners are uncomfortable with this method of schooling, they must be taught to toughen up.

Views such as those expressed above by ‘The NAPLAN Law Of Dominance of Schooling’ will not be mentioned in any open company nor conveyed to parents of children who have allowed, either wittingly or unwittingly,  their children to sit the tests.

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VACCINATION THEORY OF LEARNING.   English is not History and History is not Maths and Maths is not Art and Art is not Science and Science is not Music and English and Maths and Science are major subjects and  History and Art and Music are minor.  Once you have been innoculated with these subjects you are protected and need not be vaccinated again.

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NOTE   Google ‘Hegemony” : The Marxist theory of cultural hegemony…is the idea that the ruling class can manipulate the value system and mores of a society, so that their view becomes the world view (Weltanschanung} ….In contrast to authoritative rule, cultural hegemony is “ is hegemonic only if those affected by it also consent to and struggle over its common sense”

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