State minister firm over teaching benchmark

New South Wales Education Minister Adrian Piccoli has refused to back off on plans to set benchmarks for new teachers based on higher school certificate results, despite universities saying they may not implement the plan, write Josephine Tovey and Amy McNeilage for the Sydney Morning Herald.

Universities threw their support behind a national government plan announced last Monday for new standards for teaching students, which include an assessment of aptitude but which do not set a minimum standard academic result. Applicants could be screened for their suitability for teaching via methods that could include ''interviews, demonstrated values and aptitude, and a written statement”.

The move comes less than a week after the New South Wales government announced its own reforms aimed at improving the quality of teaching, including setting minimum exam requirements for school-leavers hoping to enter teaching degrees.

Universities Australia said institutions will not implement any proposals that conflict with the national plan.
Full report on the Sydney Morning Herald site