23 Jun 2010

Standards ARE being trialled, school leaders say

7:59 pm on 23 June 2010

The Government's claim that there will be no trial of its national standards for schools in reading, writing and maths is being called into question.

Education Minister Anne Tolley says this year is a bedding-in period for the standards but not a trial. A trial suggests the standards could be abandoned, she says.

But school principals disagree, saying they are in a trial by decree.

The alignment of assessment tools and resources with the standards has yet to be finalised and the standards themselves could be changed.

An education professor who advised the Government on the standards, John Hattie, says the standards are in a three-year trial.

On Wednesday the Educational Institute presented a petition to Parliament calling for a formal trial. It says schools should be able to opt out of the standards until the trial period is over.