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The National School Reform Agreement had failed to meet key targets, the Productivity Commission report found. (Bigstock)

Schools will have to hit tough new academic and student wellbeing targets to pocket federal funding worth $26 billion a year, after a new report found that 90,000 Australian children are failing ­literacy and numeracy tests. Source: The Australian.

Taxpayer spending on schools across all systems will be targeted to small-group ­remedial tuition, better teacher training, and more practical and professional support for dis­advan­taged and disengaged students.

A generational brain drain is exposed in a new Productivity Commission report that reveals children whose parents dropped out of high school are falling five years behind their classmates in high school and are still reading at primary school level by the time they reach year 9.

Almost one in 10 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students speaks English as a second language, exacerbating rising truancy and dropout rates.

And too many schools are punishing traumatised or disabled students, instead of providing the supports they need to succeed.

Federal Education Minister Jason Clare said the “damning’’ findings show the failure of a $319bn five-year National School Reform Agreement, which was brokered by the former Coalition government with states and territories and is due to end next year.

He said it had failed to improve outcomes for students from poor families, First Nations children, students living in regional areas and the 7 per cent of students who fail English and maths at the most basic level.

Mr Clare said “serious reform” is required.

“In future, funding needs to be tied to reforms that will make a real, practical difference,” he said.


Rules for schools: lift student performance or lose funding (By Natasha Bita, The Australian)


Call for focus on teaching as academic results slide despite $300b school funding deal (SMH)