Culture clash within the classroom

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  • The purpose of this presentation is to share some background information regarding NAPLAN in order to prepare you for my conference paper entitled ‘Culture Clash within the Classroom: A Study of Indigenous Learning Styles and the Impact on NAPLAN’
  • Naplan is a state wide test. It stands for "National Assessment Program - Literacy and Numeracy". In more simple words, they are tests of English and Maths that every student in the country completes. NAPLAN happens every year in May, and all students in Years 3, 5, 7 and 9 have to complete the tests. -The aim of NAPLAN is to test students' progress and ability in reading, writing, spelling, grammar, punctuation, and all areas of mathematics. -NAPLAN ranks students and compares them to every other student of the same grade Australia wide.
  • -NAPLAN can and should be an assessment to use for teaching purposes -to recognise the skills that students have, and what they are ready to learn.. however, NAPLAN data has been used more controversially, taking the focus away from the individual student. -One of these uses of NAPLAN data is the creation of MySchool reports. This is a website that compares schools based on NAPLAN data. There are early signs that the MySchool rankings have panicked some parents into withdrawing their children from schools with poor results. Competition for places in better performing public schools, such as selective schools in NSW, is intense. Enrolments in private Catholic and independent schools have begun to proportionally increase again, after several years of decline. The stratification of schools is dramatically worsening, with those in working class areas generally registering the worst NAPLAN results and their students and staff suffering the greatest pressure. - Teacher performance: While NAPLAN already encourages competition between schools, Gillard is actively promoting policies that seek to divide teachers. This week’s budget contains provisions to pay bonuses of between $5,400 and $8,100 to the “top performing” 10 percent of teachers from 2014. NAPLAN results will be among the criteria used to determine who receives the bonuses. As the autonomy of principals over teacher hiring is extended nationally, schools with low NAPLAN scores will struggle to attract experienced staff, while high performing schools will inevitably seek out the so-called top performing teachers.
  • -Another thing the NAPLAN data does is make a gap in achievement between Indigenous and non-indigenous students evident. -In general, the achievement of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students at or above the national minimum standard is below that of other students at every year level and in all three key domains. -The gaps between the percentage of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students and non-Indigenous students attaining the national minimum standard for all year levels and domains ranged from 16.7 percentage points to 30.2 percentage points. -The figures below represent the NAPLAN results of Indigenous and non-Indigenous students by Year level across the three domains using the data provided in Tables 7.8, 7.9 and 7.10. -This gap causes great distress among teachers due to the emphasis on NAPLAN data for the previously mentioned reasons. Schools with high Indigenous enrolments therefore have lower than average test scores than those schools that have low indigenous student enrolment.
  • The Council of Australian Government (COAG) National Indigenous Reform target that is specific for literacy and numeracy achievement is to halve the gap for Indigenous students in reading, writing and numeracy within a decade The government solely uses NAPLAN data to examine closing the gap progress. Schools are required to maximise teaching and learning outcomes for indigenous students by delivering programs suited to individual student and school needs. Because the achievements are data driven, it places a great deal of stress onto schools to choose programs that will help close the gap. Do they choose programs that are inclusive of indigenous students? Strategies that will cater for their learning styles and help them retain their knowledge? Or do they choose programs and strategies that will improve the NAPLAN data? My paper will discuss the discontinuity between how indigenous students learn, and how they are assessed.
  • -issues to be addressed include: An Education History from Both Sides The culture clash within the classroom is in reference to the Indigenous culture and the European based culture, of which the education system is descended from. The paper will briefly outline the origin of education from the Indigenous Australian culture and the European culture in order to see how they clash so violently. Reasons for ‘the gap’: Difficulties Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Students face in the Australian school system Difficulties that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students face in the Australian school system will be addressed and linked these difficulties back to lack of inclusivity of learning styles and culture. Examining the preferred learning styles of Indigenous students The paper will then examine the preferred learning styles of indigenous students. Strategies and programs inclusive of Indigenous learning styles and culture To be inclusive of Indigenous students, teachers need to teach to their style of learning. The next section of the paper suggests some strategies and programs that cater for their learning needs. Indigenous Learning Styles versus NAPLAN However, catering for Indigenous students learning styles does not necessarily mean the gap between indigenous and non-indigenous students will close. The Indigenous Learning Styles versus NAPLAN section will discuss some issues associated with being inclusive of Indigenous learning styles. Conclusion and Recommendations The paper will then make recommendations that involve sharing efforts and rewards to make the education system as well as the testing system more inclusive for our Aboriginal students in order to close the gap between indigenous and non-indigenous students. Thank you for your time. I hope that you enjoy reading my paper.

Transcript

  • 1. CULTURE CLASH WITHIN THECLASSROOM: A STUDY OFINDIGENOUS LEARNINGSTYLES AND THE IMPACT ONNAPLAN
  • 2. NAPLAN "National Assessment Program - Literacy and Numeracy". All students in Years 3, 5, 7 and 9 have to complete the tests. Aim of NAPLAN: test students progress and ability in reading, writing, spelling, grammar, punctuation, and all areas of mathematics. Picture: Cameron Richardson Source: The Daily Telegraph, retrieved from http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/naplan-consultants-recruited-to- administer-tests/story-fn6b3v4f-1226054383305
  • 3. HOW THE DATA IS USED-Assessment to use for teaching purposes-MySchool rankings and school performance-Teacher performanceCogan, J. (2011, May 10). What next in the struggle against naplan?. independent media centre australia. Retrieved fromhttp://indymedia.org.au/2011/05/10/how-naplan-and-data-is-being-used-to-trash-public-education-and-teachers-rightsPicture retrieved from: Point Roll (2011). http://blog.pointroll.com/insights/the-big-picture-is-really-very-small/attachment/data-3-2_21/
  • 4. THE ‘GAP’ Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students scores are below that of other students at every year level and in all three key domains. The gaps ranged from 16.7 percentage points to 30.2 percentage points. This graph is an example of the gap. It represents the NAPLAN results of Indigenous and non-Indigenous students in year 3 across the three domains.Figure 7.7       Achievement of Year 3 students at or above minimum standard, by NAPLAN key domains, by Indigenous status                          Australia, 2009 (per cent). Retrieved from http://www.acara.edu.au/reporting/national_report_on_schooling/aboriginal_and_torres_strait_islander_education/assessment_naplan 2.html ACARA. (2011). National report on schooling in australia 2009. Retrieved from http:// www.acara.edu.au/reporting/national_report_on_schooling/aboriginal_and_torres_strait_islander_education/assessment_naplan 2.html
  • 5. CLOSING THE GAPCouncil of Australian Government(COAG) National Indigenous Reformtarget:halve the gap for Indigenous students in reading, writingand numeracy by 2018NALAN data used to examine progressSchools choose programs to be implementedHow do schools decide which programs to use?Programs and strategies that are inclusive? OR programs andstrategies that improve NAPLAN data?Queensland Government, Department of Education and Training. (2008). Closing the gap education strategy. Retrieved from website:http://education.qld.gov.au/schools/indigenous/pdfs/closing-gap.pdf
  • 6. CONFERENCE PAPER OUTLINE An Education History from Both Sides Reasons for ‘the gap’ Examining the preferred learning styles of Indigenous students Strategies and programs inclusive of Indigenous learning styles and culture Indigenous Learning Styles versus NAPLAN Conclusion and Recommendations