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2019 (17) 3 June

ET News Digest
Your Weekly Education Newsletter

The Limits of Lesson Observation: John Hattie and Arran Hamilton
In many education systems, it is a mandatory requirement that every teacher undergoes at least an annual observation by their school leader. Heads and principals generally use some form of rubric or scoring sheet and rate their teachers against this. 
   At our last count, we located 120+ observation forms that had been published with some evidence about their reliability and validity. These observations are often used for performance management purposes, to identify who are the ‘good’ and ‘less good’ teachers, and by national inspectorates to make more holistic judgments about whether a school is outstanding, good, or poor. Read more


$350K online spelling competition
Aussie students are invited to put their spelling skills to the test in Word Mania, the biggest online spelling competition in the world for the chance to win over $350,000 in prizes.
   Created by LiteracyPlanet, an award-winning online English literacy education program, Word Mania challenges students to create as many words as they can in three minutes, from 15 randomly generated letter tiles. Word Mania is free to enter for any students from Years 1 to 9.
   Word Mania challenges students to think outside the box and develop crucial literacy skills. Read more


Young carers’ futures bleak without flexible school support
There’s a silent army out there doing more than their bit to help families that struggle; the school aged kids who help out with care and support at home.
   Their efforts often go unacknowledged and unassisted and that needs to change, beginning with support and flexibility in schools.
   Flinders University and UNSW found, through the results of a national survey which included over 5000 children aged 8–14, hundreds of young carers. Read more


Kindergarten for all three-year-old children in Victoria
Victoria will provide all three-year-old children access to subsidised kinder which acknowledges the importance of early childhood education and helps with the cost of bringing up children.
   The Victorian Budget 2019/20 invests $881.6 million in the rollout, which will give children access to two years of subsidised kinder programs delivered by a teacher before starting school.
   The program will transform early childhood education and help families struggling with the cost of living, saving some Victorian families around $5000 a year. Read more


Kids discover opera through pioneering Livestream Program
Opera is and old format but is being brought to new audiences through Victorian Opera’s pioneering Access All Areas: Livestream Program.
   Students are taken behind the scenes for an exclusive and in-depth introduction to opera through Access All Areas: Livestream Program, which runs from 22 May–17 June ahead of Victorian Opera’s 2019 Education Production: Alice Through the Opera Glass. Read more


School starts for inaugural Vivid School
The inaugural Vivid School started on Monday 27 May at International Convention Centre (ICC) Sydney with more than 1000 students and teachers taking part in the ground-breaking program that looks to inspire the Vivid Sydney artists and collaborators of the future.
   From Monday to Thursday, groups of High School students in years 9–12 heard from artists involved with Vivid Sydney 2019 about the processes involved in light art production and career paths in creative industries. Vivid's artists, designers, animators, effects experts and technicians were there. Read more


The Skyline Education Foundation supports smart disadvantaged kids
Skyline Education Foundation Australia provides intensive support for talented students from disadvantaged backgrounds for the last two years of their secondary education.
   The program provides more than 100 VCE students in Victoria with textbooks, digital resources and stationery donations.
   The first program of its kind in Australia, Skyline also provides financial, educational, emotional and practical support for bursary recipients. Read more


Melbourne Grammar School has new Headmaster
Old boy Philip Grutzner is Melbourne Grammar’s 15th Headmaster and will take up the position in January 2020, following the retirement of Headmaster Mr Roy Kelley, after 11 years at the helm.
   Grutzner is the current Principal of Carey Baptist Grammar School in Kew, Melbourne, where he will conclude in December 2019.
   MGS Council Chair, Michael Bartlett, said Council was unanimous in its decision.
   “Philip Grutzner demonstrated a unique combination of skills, values and ethos that makes him the ideal person,” he said.
Read more