The Australian Government today committed to improve the literacy results of children in remote primary schools by awarding $22 million to the organisation Good to Great Schools Australia.
Minister for Education the Hon Christopher Pyne MP congratulated Good to Great Schools Australia chairman and founder Noel Pearson on being awarded the grant, to help introduce and embed Direct and Explicit Instruction teaching approaches in remote primary schools.
Direct Instruction provides step by step lessons that focus on skill mastery, grouping students by ability rather than age.
Explicit instruction guides student learning in a systematic way through the five core literacy skills with demonstration and practice, until skills are mastered.
“The Australian Government is focussed on putting students first and making a real difference to the outcomes of students in remote primary schools,” Mr Pyne said.
“Good to Great Schools Australia share similar goals, which is why they are a worthy recipient of this significant grant, and I’m certain the organisation will achieve great things for students with this support.”
Mr Pyne said it is important fo
r the Government to work with organisations such as Good to Great Schools Australia to continue to close the gap that exists between students from remote areas and those based in metropolitan centres.
“We cannot continue to have 20 per cent of Year 3 students in remote schools failing the national minimum standard in reading compared with 4 per cent in metropolitan areas,” Mr Pyne said.
“This programme will encourage better teaching and support better outcomes as it is rich in professional learning and student support.
“Direct Instruction and Explicit Instruction approaches have been proven to make a difference to students who need help with literacy, and we want to ensure more schools have access to successful teaching approaches.
“Today is the first step on the journey to rectifying the literacy results for students in remote schools.”
Mr Pyne said the programme fits in well with the Government’s Students First approach.
“This Government is committed to building a world-class education system that puts students first and gives Australian students the best possible platform from which they can transition to further education, training or employment,” Mr Pyne said.
Under the Students First approach, the Australian Government will work with the states and territories by focussing on four key areas that will make a difference to students:
- teacher quality
- school autonomy
- parental engagement
- strengthening the curriculum