Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 05 Hansard (Tuesday, 11 May 2021) . . Page.. 1259 ..
MADAM SPEAKER: That is enough, Mr Hanson.
MS BERRY: In fact, the best people to provide advice on a student’s education are the teaching professionals themselves—not academics, not politicians around the country. Speak to the teaching professionals who are there in the front of the class every day providing that great support and that great education. I absolutely value and respect the support and the education that our teachers in the ACT provide and I know that they do everything they possibly can to support each individual student on their learning journey.
MRS JONES: Minister, are there any independent reports you can point to that indicate that the ACT’s academic results are improving compared to other states?
MS BERRY: PISA.
MR HANSON: Minister, what are the consequences for students if they fall behind in literacy and numeracy?
MS BERRY: Again, I ask that parents of students who are concerned about a child’s education speak to the teaching professionals in their schools about the different kinds of supports that a student might need. Our teachers are there every day making sure that our students get the best possible education and they are best placed to provide that advice and that support.
MR HANSON: My question is to the Minister for Education and Youth Affairs. Minister, the international standard of assessment of literacy and numeracy, PISA, and of literacy, numeracy and science, TIMSS, are international assessments of educational performance. On the most recent PISA assessment, the ACT—compared to high Australian socio-economic advantage quartile groups—placed below the average on every indicator: literacy, maths and science. Further, on the TIMSS assessment in 2019, ACT maths and science scores were well below the means used for assessing socio-economic advantage in both year 4, and year 8. Minister, what are you specifically doing to improve numeracy in ACT Schools?
MS BERRY: Again, I support our teaching professionals to provide them with the most up-to-date methods of teaching across our schools to make sure that students who are undertaking studies in numeracy get the best possible, up-to-date methods of education in that space. We have a number of programs across the ACT that support teachers to deliver in that space.
Again, whilst I respect the information and opinions of academics around the country, our education professionals are the best ones and are best placed to provide education, rather than the interactions of politicians from around the country, who always like to spend a bit of time making children, students and schools feel they are not succeeding as much as they should be, when everybody in the ACT school community knows that they are.