Premier launches Education Week 2014

28 July 2014
NSW Premier Mike Baird and Education Minister Adrian Piccoli today launched Education Week 2014 – which is an ideal time to reflect on the important contribution NSW public schools, their students and staff make to our communities.
Mr Baird and Mr Piccoli visited Campbelltown Performing Arts High School, where they were joined by local MPs Bryan Doyle and Chris Patterson.
"Education Week is the time for us all to recognise and celebrate the achievements of public schools, their students, staff and school communities," Mr Baird said.
"This year marks 60 years since Education Week was first celebrated in NSW in 1954. "The theme for the first Education Week was ‘lighting the way to a better world'. Much has changed since 1954, but public schools still pursue the same strong commitment to that philosophy. 
"Education Week also provides a great opportunity for schools to reconnect with their former students.
"Notable public school alumni who have expressed their support for Education Week 2014 include former Prime Minister John Howard, television presenter Chris Bath and former High Court judge Michael Kirby.
"Schools do not simply present students with knowledge - they create lifelong learners with skills to master an ever-changing world, and the NSW Government has introduced a range of reforms to keep pace with these changes.
"From Bondi to Bourke, and even beyond, schools are changing - responding to their individual circumstances as we break down the centralised, one-size-fits-all model that does not serve modern learners.
"Labor's record is one of 16 years of missed opportunities but the NSW Liberals & Nationals Government is transforming NSW schools through sensible, evidence-based reform.
"The NSW Government has reaffirmed its commitment of $1.76 billion over the full six years of the ‘Gonski' agreement, which will accelerate the extensive education reforms already underway in NSW.
"This commitment to NSW schools is reflected in the 2014-15 State Budget, which provides $230 million of additional funding across all school sectors."
Education Minister Adrian Piccoli said that in three years the NSW Liberals & Nationals Government has introduced six major reforms:
  • Great Teaching, Inspired Learning will improve the quality of teaching and learning by lifting entry requirements for teaching degrees, supporting early career teachers and mandating professional development for every teacher;
  • The Resource Allocation Model, backed by NSW's $1.76 billion commitment to the Gonski funding reforms, ensures more funding to the schools which need it most;
  • Local Schools, Local Decisions provides principals and communities with greater local authority to ensure schools best respond to the needs of their students;
  • Every Student, Every School strengthens the support for 90,000 students with disabilities, learning or behavioural needs;
  • Connected Communities is an innovative education reform that positions schools as ‘hubs' in some of NSW's most complex and disadvantaged communities by linking school education to other services, such as health, welfare, early childhood education and care, and vocational education and training; and
  • The $80 million Rural and Remote Education Blueprint for Action will help bridge the gap in educational achievement between city and country students.
"These reforms are all about making the needs of students the first priority of everything we do," Mr Piccoli said.
"Student learning is best served by further improving the quality of teachers in well-resourced schools in which principals have the authority to make key decisions that will benefit students at their school.
"I encourage everyone to take time this Education Week to discover the very important contribution public schools make."


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