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Year 7 Could Be Merged Into High School

Secondary-school-students-005Should Liberals win the State Election in March, year 7 could be merged into high school. This is a move that they say will help students access specialised teaching earlier to deliver better results. Steven Marshall, the opposition leader, said that the transition would most likely happen as early as 2016. This would be done after conducting an audit of all the state schools to find out if they have the capacity to take on new extra students.

How it will happen

The restructure will be phased in for about 8 years. Additional funding from the government would be provided so that schools can build more space as well as get more teachers. Opposition also say that the move will also aim at producing smaller year 7 class sizes. Western Australia and Queensland have already decided to adapt this method in 2011 and the changes will be implemented from 2015. State Government has however ruled out the move, which sets up a substantial point when it comes to the differences over education between the two major parties before the state goes for election on March 15th.

Why do Liberals support this move?

This is the second major education policy that the Liberals have released before school resumed after celebrating the Australian Day holiday, and they really feel strongly about this. This is further validated when national testing results that were released in September showed that South Australia was behind the national average in a total of 19 out of 20 categories even after the students’ showed some improvement in three quarters of the areas. Mr. Marshall said that the students in South Australia could not afford to be left behind and that there was need to bring them back to the educational forefront using better targeted instruction.

He continued to say that the national curriculum already featured more sciences than math and that this was being taught at primary level by some teachers who are not necessarily trained to teach science and math. He said that at high school level, classrooms have specialised math teachers and science labs. Mr Marshall also said that he had obtained vital documents from Freedom of Information that showed already 37 of the high schools in the state were well-placed and under capacity to commence the transition.

Mr Marshall also said that it was unlikely that the plan would have significant financial implications as most would be met by simply restructuring some of the existing resources as well as a timetable that would be used for the expansion of the schools after audit. The opposition were also hopeful that the plan would help unlock some additional money that is set aside for the school system because the national funding already has some arrangements to provide extra for the students at secondary level. A government spokesman on the other hand said that the move was reviewed and rejected because there is no evidence that it would bring better results and there was no huge demand from parents.

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