6 September 2017
Tamara Smith joins Year 9 NAPLAN tests protest
ABOVE: A student speaking at the protest outside NSW Parliament.
Greens Education spokesperson Tamara Smith MP spoke at a rally outside NSW Parliament in Sydney today to protest the NSW government’s new HSC policy which prevents students receiving their HSC if they have not achieved competency in their NAPLAN results in Year 9.
“Minister for Education Rob Stokes has upset students, parents, grandparents and teachers with this policy. If a student’s results are judged to be too low in the NAPLAN Year 9 tests by not achieving Band 8 and they don’t improve in subsequent tests they will not be allowed to receive the HSC from 2020,” said Ms Smith.
“Assessment in NSW schools is designed to be diagnostic and assist teachers and students to improve – hence the policy of assessment for learning. This approach instills fear and is punitive which is wildly inappropriate for an educational environment.”
“This is not encouraging students to learn to their full potential and it is forcing teachers to teach only what will be covered by testing. It is putting a huge amount of pressure on less able students who need more support to help them reach their full potential - not more stress.”
“Making a student feel like a failure does not encourage him or her to attend school or continue with their education at a tertiary level.”
“I join with the parent group HOPE (HSC, Opportunity, Potential 4 Everyone) and teachers in calling on the Education Minister to drop this policy in the interests of the wellbeing of all students,” said Ms Smith.