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Annette Woods, Professor, Centre of Excellence for the Digital Child and School of Early Childhood and Inclusive Education, Queensland University of Technology, QLD, Australia

What's the place of curriculum in school reform for quality and equity?

Wednesday 7 September 2022 7-8pm AEST

Annette Woods

There is much focus on achieving 'quality' schooling in Australia and beyond. Students and their families and communities, educators, and the public more generally, have a right to expect this focus of course. However, less attention continues to be paid to the critical goal of achieving a system that provides equitable access to the benefits of quality schooling, and this imbalance continues to hide the effects of an inequitable schooling system on some cohorts of Australian children and young people. Additionally, the pedagogical choices of schools and teachers are often foregrounded in these discussions of quality. While pedagogy is critical, we know that curriculum policy (and indeed assessment) is also a key component of achieving high quality, high equity schooling.

Drawing on several recent large scale research projects, in this presentation I will consider the place of curriculum in the task of achieving quality schooling outcomes for all students. I will then move to analyse the national curriculum space and discuss room for teacher agency in the curriculum work that is required of them. The discussion will be hopeful, providing insights for curriculum theory; practical solutions for teachers as they work to provide high standards of themselves and their students; while also suggesting delivery standards for systems that would not only allow, but facilitate school reform for high quality and high equity outcomes.

AITSL Standards Addressed:
1.3 Students with diverse linguistic, cultural, religious and socioeconomic backgrounds
2.2 Content selection and organisation
2.3 Curriculum, assessment and reporting

Session complete. Recording available via ACSA Webinars on Demand.