ACT Education Minister Yvette Berry has rejected opposition calls for an independent review of the ACT school system amid claims students are falling behind.
Ms Berry said the government consulted widely with students, parents and teachers in creating its "Future of Education" strategy, and added that some aspects of the Canberra Liberals' new strategy mirrored the current policies.
"We've already done that in 2018 and I think the last thing that our schools want to be going through is yet another review," Ms Berry said.
"I've been very happy to see that the Canberra Liberals have put more of a focus on equity, which is very well formed in the Future of Education strategy."
She said all schools went through independent assessments every five years to find out how to improve.
The Education Minister said the government was addressing equity problems by providing free meals at schools and increasing bursaries available to students in need.
She rejected the conclusion drawn by five studies that suggested ACT school students were behind academically, compared to students with similar levels of socio-economic advantage.
"I don't agree that just using point-in-time data tells the whole story of a child's education within the ACT public schools. NAPLAN, PISA and TIMSS, all of those assessments are point-in-time," Ms Berry said.
The Canberra Liberals' education strategy paper pointed to the negative independent review of Margaret Hendry School in Taylor, which was the first school built in line with the Future of Education strategy and the Education Directorate's new school infrastructure brief.
"I'm disappointed that the Canberra Liberals have chosen to drag out one individual school that is going through a learning journey over time," Ms Berry said.
"Margaret Hendry's delivery of education is no different to any other public school."
When asked whether it was a mistake to build the Evelyn Scott School in Denman Prospect to the same brief before Margaret Hendry School could be evaluated, Ms Berry said both of the new schools had been designed in line with expert advice.
She said teachers used a wide range of pedagogy to deliver the Australian curriculum, including inquiry-based and explicit teaching.
Australian Education Union ACT branch senior industrial officer Patrick Judge said the union didn't have a view on whether an independent review of schools was needed.
While the union hadn't read the Canberra Liberals' strategy in depth, Mr Judge said teachers would benefit from having some administrative burden centralised at the directorate level, as suggested by the opposition's report.
"Our members would really benefit from steps to free up their time to focus on what really they should be focusing on, which is delivering high-quality education," Mr Judge said.
The opposition is expected to table a motion in the Legislative Assembly next week noting its report and calling for the review.
Our journalists work hard to provide local, up-to-date news to the community. This is how you can continue to access our trusted content: