SCHOOL QUESTIONS REMAIN UNANSWERED
I have just written to the Minister for Education, Rob Stokes, to strongly suggest that he reverses the decision to merge Griffith’s two public high schools and provide each school with half the $25 million that has been already allocated, so that they can focus on improving student outcomes not improving contracts for private construction companies most of which won’t be Griffith-based.
I also suggested that he come to Griffith and do a tour of the two schools accompanied by a group of parents, students, teachers and citizens and without department officials and local politicians hanging over him like vultures.
It will interesting to see if he turns up, especially with a state election due in March 2019.
So many questions about the unsolicited merger of Griffith’s public high schools remain unanswered.
The two key questions that still have not been answered by the education ministers(s) nor the local DET officials are: (1) whose idea was it to propose the merger of the two high schools?
And (2) upon what evidence that a schools produced better outcomes for students than small schools was the decision made?
Despite parents, teachers, students and local citizens asking these questions, no one has yet provided answers to them.
To question one, Adrian Piccoli didn’t provide an answer at the Wade HS P&C’s open public meeting and no one else has since.
To question two, the local school director, David Lamb, held up a document (which he declined to provide to the public for weeks and which was produced by the department) as proving that big schools produce better outcomes for students than small schools.
The first statement in this document says, “the issue of the school size that most effectively maximises student outcomes is extremely controversial”.
Followed by …“reliable studies with rigorous methodologies are uncommon” (Slate & Jones 2005), and then, “much of the literature on the subject is characterised by ideological argument, rather than a careful analysis of the evidence”.
The document then becomes a jumbled pile of assertions and unproven platitudes.
So parents of the two public high schools still don’t know why their kids are being used, as one parent said “as guinea pigs”.
Kevin Farrell, Griffith
THANKS FOR THE COMMUNITY GRANT
On behalf of our support group i would like to thank the Griffith City Council for their generous grant from the Community Grants Program.
This was much appreciated by our group and it will assist us to continue in promoting the importance of men to have their basic prostate check.
Our application was in the area of Awareness and Education so this fits in well the aims and objectives of our group.
The figures this year show that approximately 18,000 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer and of that number 3,500 men will die.
When a man is diagnosed with prostate cancer it not only affects the man but has an emotional affect on their partners and their families.
Wishing everyone as holy and happy Christmas and a safe 2019.
Barry Maples, Griffith Prostate Cancer Support Group facilitator
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