Education minister slams My School website

NSW Education Minister Adrian Piccoli says the My School website should be scrapped, saying it puts students under unnecessary stress and is a waste of money.

NSW Education Minister Adrian Piccoli. Picture: TAMARA DEAN

NSW Education Minister Adrian Piccoli. Picture: TAMARA DEAN

The website was updated this week with the latest NAPLAN data, showing student performance in reading, writing, spelling, grammar, punctuation and numeracy tests.

But Mr Piccoli says the publication of the results, not the tests themselves, was damaging to students who were put under unnecessary and inappropriate stress.

The minister referred to one student vomiting on the morning of the NAPLAN test, saying he wasn’t calling for the tests to be scrapped, just the publication of the data on the website.

He said the money would be better spent on improving teacher quality.

Mr Piccoli told ABC Radio on Friday that comparing schools simply on the raw data added nothing to education and provided little value.

‘‘That’s why I think that sometimes the negative consequences of the My School website outweigh any positives that it provides.’’

Mr Piccoli said some schools were encouraged to teach to the test because it was often used as a marketing tool as opposed to a diagnostic tool that the test was originally established for.

He said the US and the UK published such results but they performed worse than Australia, which should emulate higher performing countries.

Mr Piccoli said he was not advocating for his state to withdraw unilaterally from the system.



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