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Inside Teaching : June 2010
www.atra.edu.au | firstname.lastname@example.org NEWS 43 Commonwealth Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations (DEEWR) are out of step with recent reforms to the delivery of inter- governmental programs to reduce prescriptive rules on how services are delivered. 'Delays resulted from some of the approaches adopted for the establishment of the program,' the AG found. 'While designed to give effect to the objective of the stimulus package, the approach adopted by (DEEWR) has reduced the capacity of school systems to take account of system priorities and the differing needs of schools in their systems. Additionally, some of the administrative arrangements put in place by the department were unduly complicated and time-consuming for education authorities.' Two months into his stint as the head of the Building the Education Revolution implementation taskforce, Orgill told Sydney radio 2GB's Ray Hadley in June, 'Clearly, the more rigid, the more centralised, the less flexibility and the more distance there is between decision-makers and the educational outcome, the more problems. 'Smaller projects have more complaints, it seems to me, because there's a fixed cost in the rollout, which is really not related to the size of the (project),' he said. Orgill's interim report is due to be completed in August. High-stakes testing STEVE HOLDEN reports on allegations of tampering by supervising teachers during May's NAPLAN testing. A South Australian teacher was allegedly caught making changes to Year 7 National Assessment Program -- Literacy and Numeracy (NAPLAN) test answers. The Adelaide Advertiser's Candice Keller and Lauren Novak named the teacher and the school at which the alleged incident occurred. According to Keller and Novak, students claimed the teacher advised them to erase answers during the test that 'weren't neat enough.' In a prepared statement, SA's Education Minister Jay Weatherill referred to an initial investigation, but also a full and continuing investigation by the SA Education Department. In his prepared statement, Weatherill advised that, 'The teacher admitted the behaviour and has been removed from duty and will be subject to a disciplinary process.' He described the alleged incident to the Advertiser as a 'gross breach of professionalism.' He also confirmed that two other teachers were also being investigated at two other schools, one for allegedly providing improper assistance to students, the other for allegedly giving advance notice of a test topic, but did not name the teachers. The SA Education Department is also investigating those allegations. The Courier Mail's Tanya Chilcott reported an allegation that posters displaying basic mathematics information were on classroom walls during the numeracy exams at a Gold Coast state high school. Education Queensland is investigating. According to ABC News, it's also investigating a principal in another school for allegedly giving advance notice of a test topic. ABC News also reported an allegation that Year 9 students at a Brisbane high school were allowed to take an unsupervised lunch break in the middle of a test. The Western Australian Education Department is investigating two allegations of cheating. NAPLAN testing went ahead after the Australian Education Union (AEU) lifted its ban when Deputy Prime Minister and Commonwealth Minister for Education Julia Gillard invited representatives of the AEU and the Independent Education Union of Australia as well as other educational experts to form a working party to provide advice on the use of the test data on the My School website. Speaking to the Advertiser, the president of the SA branch of the AEU Correna Haythorpe said NAPLAN 'has become a very, very high-stakes test, not just the diagnostic tool it was designed to be.'