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The SG Wrap: February 29, 2024


The information in the SG Wrap is aggregated from other news sources to provide you with news that is relevant to the education sector across Australia and worldwide. Each paragraph is a summary of the subject matter covered in the particular news article. The information does not necessarily reflect the views of Ideagen.



Call for Dual Naming Policies in Australia on International Mother Language Day

On International Mother Language Day, there are expected appeals for the implementation of dual naming policies throughout Australia, National Indigenous Times reports. Such policies would acknowledge the significance of Australia's indigenous languages by incorporating them into the naming of places alongside their English names. The adoption of dual naming is seen as a step towards celebrating cultural diversity and preserving the linguistic heritage of Aboriginal communities, following the attempt to eradicate Indigenous languages in the 19th and 20th centuries.


Top 100 Schools Revealed Based on NAPLAN Scores

The Daily Telegraph has revealed Australia's top 100 primary schools and top 100 secondary schools based on average National Assessment Program - Literacy and Numeracy (NAPLAN) scores, with New South Wales emerging as the hub of the nation's highest-performing educational institutions. No schools in Tasmania, the Northern Territory or the Australian Capital Territory are ranked in the top 100.


Growing Concerns Over Child Privacy in Australian Schools

The Educator reports child privacy in Australian schools as a growing concern due to EdTech companies exploiting remote learning, with a recent report from Human Rights Watch revealing that millions of children are facing potential surveillance and tracking risks. The Australian Government plans privacy law reforms following the Privacy Act Review Report, with changes expected in 2024. Advocates emphasise the importance of prioritising privacy laws over the interests of EdTech companies to protect children's rights.


Progress in Addressing Gender Pay Gap

The Sydney Morning Herald reports that recent data publication by the Workplace Gender Equality Agency marks a pivotal move towards gender pay equality in Australia. This initiative aims for transparency and accountability in corporate Australia, addressing a long-standing issue where women's median base salary significantly trails men's. With a commitment to annual data release, this approach not only highlights existing disparities but also encourages corporations to pursue equality.


Addressing Back-to-School Anxiety: Expert Shares Strategies for Students and Teachers

The challenges of back-to-school anxiety faced by students and teachers are explored in a recent article by The Educator. The article sheds light on statistics concerning childhood anxiety diagnoses and psychological distress among young individuals. Dr. Tom Brunzell, an education expert, underscores the significance of structured routines and supportive environments to counter stress overload in educational settings. With 72% of Australian children having experienced "at least one adverse childhood experience of stress overload", the article proposes strategies like predictable lesson plans, personalised greetings, and self-care practices for educators to cultivate a conducive learning environment.


NSW Schools to Introduce Revised Curriculum on Australian Democracy and History

A new mandatory curriculum will be introduced in New South Wales schools that strengthens the teaching of Australian democracy, the legal system, and the country's history, reports The Sydney Morning Herald. Currently, these studies are not compulsory unless students choose to pursue commerce in years 9 and 10. This educational shift is targeted at providing students with a foundational understanding of the structural and historical aspects of Australian society.


SA Government Boosts Family Support with Food Security Measures

According to Mirage News, the Malinauskas Labor Government in South Australia has expanded support for families by introducing measures like providing extra school breakfasts and granting Food Security Grants to public schools and preschools. This initiative, unveiled in the 2023-24 State Budget, targets food insecurity, particularly in disadvantaged schools. The increased funding includes support for breakfast program providers KickStart for Kids and Foodbank SA & NT, aiming to offer 1.4 million free healthy meals to students over four years. The program's expansion aims to reduce living costs while fostering healthy food access and education in school communities.


SA to Implement Earlier Comprehensive Period Education in Schools

In South Australia, InDaily reports a significant shift in period education is forthcoming. This change aims to enhance the quality and scope of menstrual education in schools, ensuring that students receive comprehensive and accurate information. This adjustment is crucial given that a recent study found that the age of first periods is decreasing while the age at which it is taught about is not. The intervention is designed not only to educate about the biological aspects of menstruation but also to teach young people about day-to-day management of their periods.


Western Australian Students to Lose ATAR Score Bonuses in Key Subjects

The Sydney Morning Herald reports that Western Australian students enrolled in specific challenging ATAR subjects will no longer be granted score bonuses from 2026 to ensure fairness in university admissions. The elimination of automatic 10% bonuses in key subjects aims to promote equal opportunities for all year 12 students. This adjustment aligns WA's practices with those of other states, removing disparities resulting from bonus allocations and allowing all students to achieve equal aggregated scores irrespective of their subject choices. Future year 12 students will be affected by this change, enabling them to plan their ATAR courses based on standardised scoring criteria earlier, while current year 11 and 12 students will not be impacted. This modification preserves the ATAR calculation method but revises the score distribution range, potentially influencing future ATAR outcomes based on overall score distributions.




New Zealand Launches Inquiry into School Property Management Amid Concerns Over Classroom Builds

The New Zealand Government has launched an inquiry into school property management, reports RNZ News, after the revelation that 100 new classroom builds were in doubt. This investigation aims to evaluate the current state and management practices of school properties to identify potential areas for improvement and ensure that educational facilities meet both current and future needs. The inquiry is being conducted to address concerns about the sustainability and safety of school buildings, aiming to create a conducive environment for learning and development for students and educators.


Government of Canada Introduces Legislation to Combat Harmful Content Online, Including the Sexual Exploitation of Children

The Government of Canada has introduced the Online Harms Act, legislation to make online platforms responsible for addressing harmful content and for creating a safer online space that protects all people in Canada, especially children. The Bill would create stronger online protections for children and aims to better safeguard everyone in Canada from online hate and other types of harmful content. It would also hold online platforms, including livestreaming and user-uploaded adult content services, accountable for reducing users’ exposure to harmful content on their platforms and help prevent its spread.



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SG Editorial Team

SG is published by Ideagen. CompliSpace is Ideagen’s SaaS-enabled solution that specialises in helping schools achieve complete, continuous and consistent compliance.

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