Page 3097 - Week 10 - Thursday, 15 August 2013

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technologies—e-books, online resources such as wikis and blogs and forums—but they also need to have the knowledge and training to access, evaluate, use and reference information from hard copy material. Teacher librarians also provide a very valuable service by providing professional development assistance to all of the teachers within their school area. (Second speaking period taken.) As I was saying, teacher librarians perform a very useful service to their colleagues, to fellow teachers in the particular schools that they are in, with the additional support they give to these teachers in assisting with the delivery of information services to teachers so that they can impart better information to their students.

I have been lucky to pop in to classes having their library lessons in some of our schools and the students seem to be genuinely engaged and having fun. At schools like Forrest primary, who offer an International Baccalaureate program for middle school students, they insist they could not possibly offer such a curriculum if it were not for their teacher librarian.

It was somewhat disappointing then to read the Hansard transcripts of the discussions that took place when questions were asked about the election commitment and whether it was somewhere in the budget. I trust the directorate’s responses, which included a range of things, including a new tracking system for library resources and e-books, did not mean that in fact there is no new money. I look forward to the minister’s launch of this initiative, so lauded during the election campaign. In the interim it might be wise to brief the directorate on what she has in mind.

The ongoing issues surrounding behaviour management in schools were also raised through a number of questions. I am sure my office is not unique in the number of calls we get from distressed parents. Bullying in schools is becoming far too common. I would like to have seen more resources put towards additional counselling and behavioural experts, as the Liberal Party had in our education policy at the last election.

I note also the questioning around NAPLAN results. I believe it is important to recognise that our students are doing well against national standards, but I want to see more effort put into the significant numbers of students who are falling below national averages in a number of subjects and at a number of year levels.

I support the several recommendations seeking more information on teacher quality improvements because the key to delivering an upgraded national curriculum will be in the quality of our teachers. Again the Liberal Party went to the last election promising increases in professional development for teachers and it is an area in which continuous investment must be made.

This year the Education and Training Directorate has taken carriage of children’s services, previously located in Community Services. I note that the budget includes funding for additional training in child care, specifically a certificate III in children’s services.

Under this initiative $240,000 has been allocated to the children’s services sector to upskill its workforce to meet requirements under the national quality framework. The

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