Birmingham threatens Catholic NAPLAN achievements

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7 March 2018

Catholic schools across the state have again shown their strength and standard in the 2017 NAPLAN data released today, Catholic Education Commission of Victoria Ltd (CECV) Executive Director Stephen Elder says – but their achievements are directly under threat from Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and his Education Minister Simon Birmingham.

‘Today’s results show 15 Victorian Catholic schools showed “substantially above average gain” in the NAPLAN performance of their students in the basic building blocks of learning,’ Mr Elder said.

‘However, more than a quarter of these have already lost funds since last year under the federal Coalition’s Gonski 2.0 package.

‘Senator Birmingham boasted this morning “Australia’s schools, universities and training providers are amongst the best in the world,” so why is he undermining their work with what everyone else regards as unfair funding policies?

‘Catholic schools across Victoria are set to lose over one billion dollars over the next decade under his plans.

‘The Victorian Catholic NAPLAN results illustrate just what is under threat.

‘Our 15 star schools come from across the Melbourne metropolitan area and all corners of the state – reflecting the quality of Catholic schools and the dedication of their teachers across the entire system.

‘The Australian Curriculum Assessment and Reporting Authority, the body that administers NAPLAN, describes their level of success as “significant and worthy of acknowledgement.”

‘They are remarks all of us in Catholic education would heartily endorse – a credit to our teachers, our students and the support they receive from their families.’

The Victorian Catholic schools that make up this year’s roll of honour are:

  • Holy Eucharist School, St Albans (Year 3-5) – numeracy
  • Christ the King Primary School, Braybrook (3-5) – reading and numeracy
  • Christ the King School, Newcomb (3-5) – numeracy
  • St James’ School, Sebastopol (3-5) – reading and numeracy
  • St John XXIII Primary School, Thomastown (3-5) – numeracy
  • St Gabriel’s School, Traralgon (3-5) – reading and numeracy
  • St Martin de Porres School, Laverton (3-5) – numeracy
  • Resurrection School, Keysborough (3-5) – numeracy
  • St Margaret’s School, East Geelong (3-5) – numeracy
  • St Laurence O’Toole School, Leongatha (3-5) – numeracy
  • St John’s School, Clifton Hill (3-5) – numeracy
  • St Joseph’s School, Beechworth (3-5) – reading
  • St Joseph’s School, Springvale (3-5) - numeracy
  • St Joseph’s School, Numurkah (3-5) – reading and numeracy
  • Marian College, Sunshine (7-9) – reading

‘Yet again, these results emphasis the unique benefits of Catholic schools,’ Mr Elder said.

‘We have a strong school system that offers a unique mix of quality, affordable, accessible, faith-based education – one that’s getting better every day.

‘Parents understand we offer something special.

‘It’s why were are entrusted with the education of over 210,00 students in nearly 500 schools state-wide; close to one in four Victorian school students, the highest proportion of any Catholic system.

‘It makes Malcolm Turnbull’s and Simon Birmingham’s vandalism even harder to understand.

‘Make no mistake: their policies pose a direct threat to the achievements we are celebrating today.’

Further information: Christian Kerr, 0402 977 352

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