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ACSA Webinars
Flip the System Australia: What Matters in Education

Pasi Sahlberg, Professor of Education Policy, Gonski Institute for Education - School of Education

Equitable Education in Australia: Empowering Schools to Lead the Way

Wednesday 24 March 2021 7-8pm AEST

Pasi Sahlberg

The global education race is on. School systems around the world focus on 'raising the bar' in order to achieve 'educational excellence' and higher ranks in international league tables. National and international test scores keep teachers and schools on course. At the end of the day, however, teachers are held accountable for that. This chapter suggests an alternative theory of change for Australia, especially after the global pandemic has had such a devastating impact on children's wellbeing and learning.

Flipping the system to move from accountability and control to trust and empowerment requires three, bold education policy transformations: (1) From state-led to school-based and teacher-led curriculum; (2) from standardised 'one-size-for-all' teaching to individually tailored learning; and (3) from funding schools equally to investing in equity more strategically.

Australia has many advantages to build great schools for all of its children. This chapter concludes that, rather than launch another massive education reform or spend too many resources on 'catching-up' in schools, Australia should flip the system by empowering its highly capable teachers and schools to lead the way towards more equitable education.

AITSL Standards Addressed:
2.1 Content and teaching strategies of the teaching area

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