Page 2822 - Week 08 - Wednesday, 16 August 2017

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As I see it, there are five key pillars that ensure a robust education system for both government and non-government schools: ensuring that we have the best and most equipped teachers; providing a safe and inclusive environment for educators and students alike; ensuring the right balance when it comes to autonomy for schools; making sure that our school communities are fully engaged with what is happening within their school and their community; and, finally, having a robust and current curriculum. This is what the government should be focused on instead of cheap political shots through motions in this place on a Wednesday.

Madam Assistant Speaker, I move:

Omit all words after “That this Assembly”, substitute:

“(1) notes:

(a) the significant contribution teachers make to the quality of the ACT education system;

(b) the increase in workplace violence against teachers and school support staff;

(c) the importance of providing support and adequate professional development to teachers and support staff in all ACT schools;

(d) the ACT Auditor-General’s Report No 4/2017 which found, among other things, that ACT public schools are performing below similar schools in other jurisdictions despite expenditure on a per student basis for public schools being one of the highest in the country;

(e) the diversity that non-government education brings to the ACT in offering parents’ choice;

(f) the importance of adequate funding for all school sectors;

(g) the importance of adequate funding and resources for students with special needs; and

(h) the NSW Government’s recent decision to scrap the Safe Schools Coalition Program; and

(2) calls on the ACT Government:

(a) to ensure Canberra families have choice when it comes to selecting the best educational; and

(b) to table any analysis available to the Education Directorate that provides an accurate picture of the ACT’s academic performance when compared to similar schools in other jurisdictions.”.

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