Sex talk with teens must address pornography

Sex educator Liz Walker says parents need to rewrite the discussions they are having with their teenage children about sex, due to the proliferation of Internet pornography. A report published this week in the Australian Journal of Medicine [1] expressed concern about the relationship between teenagers accessing pornography and risky behaviour. The authors reviewed existing.. Read more

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Don’t boycott NAPLAN! Turning our back skews good data

By Barry McGaw, Vice-Chancellor’s Fellow, Melbourne Graduate School of Education at University of Melbourne. A small but vocal group is calling on parents to withdraw their children from the National Assessment Program: Literacy and Numeracy (NAPLAN) tests. But if this call is successful and enough children are pulled, parents will not obtain the information that.. Read more

Tens of thousands of students in alternative education

by Justin Norrie, Editor of The Conversation. More than 33,000 disenfranchised young Australians are taking part in at least 400 “non-conventional schooling” programs, according to the largest ever national survey of students who have fallen out of the regular schooling system. A report commissioned by the Dusseldorp Skills Forum into alternative education courses in Australia.. Read more

How to make the most of parent teacher nights

Parent teacher nights can be stressful experiences. Both for your teenager, who may be sitting there nervously waiting for the guillotine to drop, and for yourselves, as you struggle to find your way around an unfamiliar campus, to line up for a few minutes with a teacher, only to find you’ve missed your slot because.. Read more

Public versus private education

On day 3 of our National Youth Week teen writing event, Phoebe (17) explored how she feels about her public education. State or private education: which is better? Undoubtedly you as parents have some kind of stance on this issue. My parents chose a state school for me despite being quite well off. I can.. Read more

Why schools and corporate brands shouldn’t mix

The furore following the announcement that Jenny Craig CEO Amy Smith would address a gathering of hundreds of girls’ school teachers has once again brought the uncomfortable issue of corporate presence in schools to light. The public response – that school groups should not be seen to endorse the dieting industry – is certainly warranted… Read more

Homework: an exercise in futility

Guest post by Shambolic Living. How much homework goes on in your house? Are you a fan of the after-school revision, assignments and projects? Or do you resent the impact homework is having on your family life? At the risk of launching into a full-blown rant I have to state my view of homework: it.. Read more

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Education review: the teacher is the key

By Ned Manning, writer and teacher. The Gonski Report has rightly recommended that there be a serious injection of funds into education. One of the best things about this excellent report is that it puts education back where it should be, at the centre of national debate. One thing needs to be established. At the.. Read more

Teens having sex younger, need better sex ed

The age Australian teens are first having sex is getting younger, prompting a call for increased sexual health education for young people. The sexual activity of Australian teenagers is measured in a national survey by La Trobe University every six years. In the last survey, the percentage of students who reported having had sexual intercourse.. Read more

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Gonski review calls for $5 billion to lift all students to national standard

Every school student in Australia would be allocated enough needs-based funding to be educated to a national standard, under a landmark proposal to pump an additional $5 billion of government money into schools annually. Following the largest review of school funding in almost 40 years, the Gonski report – handed down today – has recommended.. Read more