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It's elementary ...

A report, commissioned by the NSW Education and Standards Authority, has found no improvement in maths and reading among students in a decade and the results of disadvantaged students have declined sharply …

No shit, Sherlock!

… and now there are calls for the NAPLAN process to be reviewed …

Um, educators, the people tasked with the actual teaching of the children, have been asking for it to be reviewed FOR 10 YEARS!

I love Alfie Kohn’s rule of thumb: The individual’s enthusiasm about the employment of ‘data’ in education is proportional to his or her distance from the actual students. Never has this been truer than for NAPLAN - a tool that tells us little about a child, but everything about a one size fits all education viewpoint, and a systematic dumbing down and narrowing of instruction. It’s almost as if, according to some sections of the education system, that school exists for the implementation of NAPLAN.

Yes, NAPLAN needs a review. But, reviews won’t matter until we are prepared to answer a very simple question - What is school for? When we can agree on the answer to that question, we’ll be able to stop wasting time and resources on the things that school isn’t for.

I strongly suspect that school isn’t for NAPLAN.

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