Tension between the national teacher union and Labor governments will escalate into industrial warfare as teachers prepare to boycott national literacy and numeracy testing this year.
The Australian Education Union, which represents more than 180,000 teachers in public schools around the country, will put the recommendation to delegates at its annual federal conference in Melbourne today.
The president of the union, Angelo Gavrielatos, said the looming threat of school league tables had ''united the profession in a way not seen before in Australia''.
He said despite their stated opposition to league tables and the simplistic ranking and comparison of schools, state and federal governments had failed to prevent them.
If the federal and state governments took no further action, teachers would prevent the national tests from taking place as scheduled on May 11, 12 and 13 for years 3, 5, 7 and 9, Mr Gavrielatos said.
Teachers have traditionally used the tests to identify and remedy any problem areas in learning.
''These tests were never designed for the purpose of school comparisons,'' he said.
''Teachers cannot sit by and watch damage inflicted upon students and school communities through the creation and publication of school league tables.'' . . . .
"A child's learning is the function more of the characteristics of his classmates than those of the teacher." James Coleman, 1972
Monday, January 18, 2010
What AFT and NEA Might Learn From Australian Teachers
From the Sydney Morning Herald: