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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2011 Week 04 Hansard (Thursday, 7 April 2011) . . Page.. 1542 ..


I note that another recommendation was around the NAPLAN testing and being able to pull that apart a bit in order for students with a disability to participate. This is an issue that parents have raised with me. They want their children to have some goals that they are going to reach during their education, and they do want to be able to participate in processes such as NAPLAN.

I note that the department have said they will be going off to talk to ACARA about how this might be pursued and are looking at forming a working group to investigate this. The government response states:

It is envisaged that the outcome of this process will be a system of nationally consistent standards of student learning outcomes applicable to students with disabilities …

I think this is a good thing to be pursuing. My only concern is how long it will take, because I know there are parents out there now who would like this up and running. Again, I would urge government to participate and to pursue this particular objective. I think it is important.

I would like to thank the standing committee for the hard work that they put into this report. I would like to thank all of those parents, organisations and advocates who participated in that inquiry. It is a very important part of this whole debate; you have added value to the debate with the report. I look forward to seeing the government’s response in real terms—seeing that money on the ground, seeing the resources on the ground, seeing the changes to processes that are in place that are going to mean that those children in our education system are going to be given the best opportunity to achieve an educational outcome that they want, that their parents expect, and that we all hope that they are able to achieve. I look forward to hearing what the government has done since this report has been tabled.

MR HARGREAVES (Brindabella) (11.44): I think it is important to put on the record that this is a report with 30 recommendations, with good engagement by the community, the Assembly and the minister, and I congratulate the minister on putting it forward.

MR BARR (Molonglo—Minister for Education and Training, Minister for Planning, Minister for Tourism, Sport and Recreation and Minister for Gaming and Racing) (11.44), in reply: I thank members for their contributions to the debate. I thank the standing committee for the conduct of the inquiry, and, indeed, all those who participated—parents and disability advocacy groups in particular. All have played a meaningful part in contributing to the government’s continued commitment to high quality education opportunities for ACT students. Today is not the day to outline the detail of the government’s response.

Mrs Dunne interjecting—

MR BARR: That will be contained largely within the budget. I will not be pre-empting budget announcements today, other than to assure members that a significant


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