A Queensland-wide door-knocking and leaflet campaign calling for Year 12 external exams has received overwhelming support in Brisbane State electorates over the past month.
“In street after street all over Brisbane, the question our campaigners are hearing is not whether Queensland schools need external exams like the rest of Australia, but when we will get them,” said Tempe Harvey, spokesperson for the campaign.
“It does not matter who opens the door. We are getting heart-felt support for the fair interstate system, which has a split of around 50:50 between end-of-Year 12 state-wide exams in each subject and teacher-set tests tailored to each school.
Strong support from recent Year 12s
“Recent Qld school-leavers who want external exams instead of pointless Qld government-mandated drip-torture assignments are our strongest supporters. Their concern came through in an Australian survey published this week showing school and study problems as the ‘biggest worry’ for our school students. http://www.couriermail.com.au/news/queensland/when-it-comes-to-stressors-one-worry-has-students-sweating-more-than-the-rest/story-fnn8dlfs-1227140263725
“It is no surprise we are also getting rock solid support from parents, tradies, professionals, retirees and anyone who has seen schooling outside of Queensland.
“We could be stuck with the new system for 20 years. MPs must promise proper exams in every subject like all other Australian states. Parents will then know if Year 12s are doing well or even passing subjects.
“Cabinet is expected to delay a decision on the post-OP System until after more consultation in mid-January 2014 about an untried, unproven alternative model that fails to guarantee exams in all subjects.
“We are asking Premier Newman for an assurance that the thousands of Queenslanders who have already contacted their MPs or government inquiries about the post-OP System will be listened to without having to restate their strong support for a proper 50% exam system,” Mrs Harvey said.
1. Qld school assignments: The government’s assessment authority QCAA (Queensland Curriculum and Assessment Authority) requires teachers to set unpopular ‘teach-yourself’ assignments in many subjects. These Google-it projects stress students, deprive them of proper teaching and lower academic standards.
2. Qld needs scaling as used in NSW, VIC and WA: End-of-Year 12 external exams (worth 50%) will still let teachers customise their lessons and remaining tests (worth 50%) to their own students. Once a public exam is in place, automatic scaling can fairly compare school performance across all subjects state-wide. This system still gives credit for in-school work, but will identify under-performing schools that need help and root out those schools that embellish their results.