By Brian PohladThe Queensland Government is set to make significant changes to the way schools are funded in the wake of a scathing report that found the state’s teaching system was failing to meet standards.
The damning report by independent education consultant, Professor David Eakin, was published on Thursday.
Professor Eakin found the Queensland Government had not properly developed or monitored a robust teaching model, with many schools failing to address key learning issues.
“We have to take seriously the fact that we have a lack of teacher quality in Queensland, particularly in our schools,” Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said.
“I think it is very important that we invest in the quality of our teachers and the quality that they bring into the classroom.”
It is also important that Queenslanders have confidence in our education system, and our universities and research centres.
“Queensland’s educational system is far from perfect, and we are very proud of the work we have done.”
Queenslanders are currently allocated between $1.8 billion and $2.6 billion per year to the teaching system, with $1 billion going towards schools and $1 million towards colleges and universities.
The report also found that only a small percentage of schools received any money from the Government for student funding, while some schools were paying students more than the standard teaching rate.
It recommended that the Government improve the way it allocates funding to schools, with schools receiving a fixed proportion of the funding.
Professor Mark Wilson, a professor of education and research at the University of Queensland, said that was not enough.
“Teaching is a very complex field and a very hard field to master,” he said.”[There’s] lots of things you can do with this kind of information.”
But there are a lot of assumptions about what we do, and how we’re going to make money.
“There are no numbers that are going to get the Government out of that position.”
Mr Wilson said Queensland’s teaching was a “pretty good system” but that many of the issues were not being fully addressed.
“You have to have a very, very, tight system of governance, and you have to be very, extremely good at keeping the system in the system,” he told ABC Radio Brisbane.
“So you have the governance, you have control of the teachers, you’ve got to have control over the facilities and you’ve just got to be pretty, very careful about it.”
He said the Government needed to work on strengthening the system to make sure teachers were well-trained.