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Denny NAPLAN Report an Indictment on Liberal Government

Cassy O'Connor MP  -  Monday, 31 January 2022

Tags: Schools, Education, NAPLAN

Cassy O’Connor MP | Greens Leader and Education spokesperson

Dr Lisa Denny’s report on a decade of NAPLAN data paints a devastating picture of education in the state. The damning analysis reveals Tasmanian children are being let down before they even enter high school.

While the Liberals have focussed on pushing 11/12 attendance, this jarring report makes it clear many young Tasmanians won’t make it to that level and their lives will be made more challenging through this lack of education. 

It’s clear from this analysis the system is failing students. 

Alarmingly, this report confirms the educational gap between high and low SES areas is widening. A well-funded and supported public education system would help to  ensure a child’s postcode doesn’t determine their educational success and life prospects. 

Another shocking statistic was the widening gender gap, with over a half of year 9 male students (52.7%) not exceeding the expected standard for writing compared with a third of female students.

Dr Denny’s report has been released ahead of children returning to the classrooms, or not, in what looks to be not only dangerous but a highly disrupted school year due to Covid. 

All while Education Minister, Sarah Courtney has been sunning herself overseas. 

Have the Liberals analysed Tasmania’s NAPLAN results and ignored the growing problems?  Do they want Tasmanian children to be set up to fail?

Dr Denny is spot on when she says there’s no way to sugar coat this. Urgent action is needed by the Gutwein Government. There’s an urgent need for Tasmania to adopt quality guarantee principles.

Priority investment is needed to lift all public schools to acceptable standards. There is no place for pork-barrelling or piecemeal announcements – just real investment in disadvantaged communities and students who are struggling, speech pathology and school psychologist support, as well as an expanded school breakfast program to ensure no student starts their day of learning with an empty stomach.