Thursday, 25 May 2017

Foggy this morning at school.

Creepy cows in the fog! 
 Already fining up into a lovely late autumn day.

Finished Flat Stanley, art material ready for an Italian weather mobile, creating a tower and finishing off work for Howl's Moving Castle.

Amazing 'own goal'

It's the parents sending their children to private schools, especially the 'elite' private schools that this government has, to use Pyne's own words....'a special affinity with'. When they want to make an announcement about education, they go to these schools. Its children from these schools who have the pedigree to join the Young Liberals on campus. (If they can survive being at university wihout being 'spoon fed' by their a get an outstanding VCE score....gotta get into Melbourne/Sydney Uni to do medicine or law!) BUT....its these families who are going to be equally affected like state schools by Birmingham's funding cuts to education! ...oh the irony of it. Mmmmm how will this play out at election time. So much for silencing the 'education funding wars'!

From the SMH
Forty per cent of private schools – more than previously thought – would be worse off under the Turnbull government's education funding changes, according to the sector's peak body.
The private school sector says the fact more than 400 of its schools would lose out shows the Catholic sector is wrong to suggest it has been singled out for harsh treatment by the government.
The Catholic sector has reacted furiously to the funding changes, claiming it will have to increase fees massively at many schools to make up for the shortfall. 

The Independent Schools Council of Australia (ISCA) says it supports the government's model because it creates a more even playing field for schools.
The council outlined its argument in a submission to a Senate inquiry examining the funding changes. The Greens and many members of the Senate crossbench say they will use the inquiry to decide whether to support or reject the new funding model. 

The government has previously estimated that 350 schools would be worse off than under current arrangements, with slower funding growth, while 24 mostly high-fee schools would have their funding cut.
The ISCA says that, based on its analysis of Department of Education modelling, it believes 423 private schools will be worse off over the decade than under the current legislation.
"Recent media coverage and statements from Catholic school system leaders give the impression that Catholic systemic schools are the only schools adversely impacted by the proposed changes," the council's chief executive, Colette Colman, said. 
"That such a large proportion of independent schools are impacted by the proposal clearly dispels any perception that the government is targeting one section of the non-government sector over another.
"However, ISCA believes that the opportunity to establish a consistent and equitable funding baseline for all non-government schools should be our highest priority.
"Continuing to seek to protect inconsistently applied funding arrangements that distort the non-government school relativities is no longer in anybody's interests, particularly not Australian school students."
While some elite private schools will have their funding cut under the new model, others such as King's in Sydney and Caulfield Grammar School in Melbourne would receive significant funding boosts.
Many of the schools that would be better off charged low to medium fees, Ms Colman said. 

British Head Teachers buy into the election.

3,000 headteachers across 14 counties have come together to issue a warning to parents voting in the general election. And it’s one we all need to listen to if we value our children’s future and education.

The letter

The heads have sent out a letter to parents, seen by The Canary, to help them put education at the forefront of the election debate. And while they are careful not to be party political, they are adamant that what is happening with schools is a vital issue:

During all our campaigning work to improve funding for each and every child in each and every school, we have been careful not to become involved in a politically biased or partisan way. Headteacher colleagues and I feel that ahead of the forthcoming general election, it is crucial that parents, carers and all other interested parties raise the issue of school funding ‘on the doorstep’ with all prospective candidates.

It continues:

It would be naive to think that school funding is the only issue affecting everyone’s lives but school finances are in such a dreadful state that we believe it is vital to urge you to raise it as a key issue.

Furthermore, it states:

As professionals, we are only interested in securing fair and adequate funding for the children we educate. This is under severe threat and has influenced our decision to contact you in a collaborative manner.

A clear choice

The letter may not be party political. And schools may have made every effort to keep party politics out of their campaigns. But the fact remains that it is the Conservative Party that is making real-term cuts to education. And it is under the Conservative Party that schools are being forced to make teachers redundant and cut essential services. As well as making staff teach in leaky classrooms and with increased class sizes.

And it is the Conservative Party that has made it absolutely clear in its manifesto that it is not prepared to properly fund our schools. But not only is it not providing the funding, it is not listening to teachers.

Although too ashamed to call them by name, the manifesto reintroduces grammar schools. This is despite both the National Union of Teachers and the National Association of Headteachers opposing the plans.

Meanwhile, Theresa May has been labelledthe “dinner snatcher” for proposals to take free school dinners away from primary school children. May wants to replace them with breakfasts. But that’s a policy the government has had to step back from, given original costings provided less than 7p per child for breakfast.

Another world is possible

The Labour Party, however, is showing that it doesn’t have to be like this. Jeremy Corbyn promised that:

We will make sure schools are properly resourced by reversing the Conservatives’ cuts and ensuring that all schools have the resources they need.

And the proposals in its manifesto could do just this. Labour plans include introducing a National Education Service that will invest £25bn into schools. This means reducing class sizes for infants, free school dinners for all primary school children, giving teachers more control over the curriculum and ending the public sector pay cap.

Corbyn is showing that he is listening to teachers. And headteachers responded by giving him a standing ovation at their conference. A conference that Education Secretary, Justine Greening, was too scaredto speak at.

Schools in England don’t have to be underfunded. There is an alternative. And Corbyn is showing that another world is possible for our children. But it’s up to us on 8 June as to whether we want to take it.

Wednesday, 24 May 2017

Howls Moving Castle work

Today I made a sample of Howl's 'location changer' ( Helps him keep one step ahead of the Witch of the Waste) today is apparently Public Education Day, not that you'd know it!
Ruined towers finished today and they look great!

Pop up scene

I made a pop up scene sample for the Famous Give book we just finished.
We also started painting our tower ruins from Kittin Island.
Also just confirming....using Birminghams own budget documents... schools will be 22 billion dollars worse off!
HOORAY 108000 views!

Tuesday, 23 May 2017

Making a tower

Making a tower like the one in ruins on Kirrin Island.

Mailing away Flat Stanley
The letter I got from the Minister! Wow $800!

Monday, 22 May 2017

Labor rejects morally bankrupt Gonski 2.0

Today in Parliament:

Labor has resolved to vote against both the government's education measures - school funding and university funding. The opposition's education spokeswoman, Tanya Plibersek, told her caucus colleagues that the school plan was an attack on public schools. Ms Plibersek told MPs the Greens support for the changes "shows how moronic they are".

The ALP has denounced and will push back against these deceitful policies. I got a letter from the Education Minister saying Glen Park would get an increase in funding of...........wait for it ......$800 (No not $8000) from the Commonwealth from 2017-18! WOW!! as the letter says our school may never actually see the money. As with the catholic system the money for us might be reallocated to a.....wealthier school! (actually I don’t think our current state government would do that!)

Their generosity astounds me! The duplicitous actions of the Greens doesn't surprise me at all.