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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2010 Week 07 Hansard (Thursday, 1 July 2010) . . Page.. 3078 ..


enrolment process, most particularly about parental occupation. It is a level of data that we do not have. But we are seeking through our work in the ministerial council to get a more uniform national system there. That is something that education ministers discussed.

We are also, of course, looking at a range of other issues that we can add to the My School website to provide more information. But the overall principle is that more information is better for parents.

MR SPEAKER: Ms Hunter, a supplementary?

MS HUNTER: Thank you, Mr Speaker. Minister, what was agreed to in relation to copyright on the information posted on the My School website?

MR BARR: We did look at two specific issues: the first related to efforts to stop data mining. There is a process where particular private organisations were sending bots or spiders on to the My School website to extract all of the data and then seeking to re-sell that data back to consumers and charging them a fee for it. We have sought to respond to that by ensuring that that practice is outlawed. In this technological age there are those who will seek to make money out of virtually every aspect of public data collection, so trying to restrict other organisations from making money out of the data that is available on the My School website was something that all ministers agreed was important.

The ministerial council has issued a directive to the Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority on that particular matter. Also, we did discuss what levels of copyright were appropriate for ACARA to hold over that My School data, ensuring and respecting the right of the media to be able to report on these matters. I think this obviously is at the heart of the question from Ms Hunter and I reiterate that neither this government nor any other Australian government is interested in trying to censure the media’s capacity to report on the information that is available on the My School website. That would be counterproductive.

In New South Wales, the Liberals and the Greens tried to combine to stop newspapers from reporting. It was a massively unsuccessful thing. In fact, what it did was to encourage more and worse and simplistic league tables being published in New South Wales than anywhere else in the country.

MS LE COUTEUR: A supplementary, Mr Speaker.

MR SPEAKER: Yes, Ms Le Couteur.

MS LE COUTEUR: Thank you. Minister, what concerns did education ministers raise in relation to the round of NAPLAN testing which has just been completed and the My School website?

MR BARR: Ministers discussed a number of matters, particularly in relation to security, around the NAPLAN tests themselves. We wanted to ensure the integrity of the testing system and undertook to ask the Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority, who undertake the tests on behalf of the ministerial council, to


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