Subjects: Coronavirus and schools, Year 12 students
Natalie Barr: Well, concerns have been raised around how changes to schooling from coronavirus will damage ATAR results for Year 12 students. Australian education ministers are meeting tomorrow to come up with a solution. Boosting overall scores and changes to university application procedures have been flagged as possible options. For more on this, Education Minister Dan Tehan joins me now. Morning to you.
Dan Tehan: Morning Nat.
Barr: A lot of options on this. I know it’s challenging. The Victorian Premier has raised the possibility of Year 12 extending into next year. Is that an option you’re considering seriously?
Tehan: Well, all options will be considered tomorrow when we meet. That’s an outlier option, that’s in a very worst-case scenario. The hope is that we’ll be able to get everyone through this year, because we want all those Year 12s to be able to realise their dreams of going to uni, going to a vocational education provider, or going into employment, like every Year 12 has done for the last 20, 30, 40 years. So, that is what we hope to set out. But, of course, as the pandemic takes its course, we’re going to have to be flexible and adjust. But, the hope is by this year, we’ll have all Year 12s realising their dreams.
Barr: So, what measures are you putting in place to realise that to be accomplished this year? Are you extending, is it possible to extend this year? Make the exams go later? What options?
Tehan: All those things are being looked at. So, every state and territory has a curriculum and assessment body. They are reporting back to us tomorrow with all the options that we can look at. We’ll analyse and discuss those. Obviously, every state and territory has jurisdictional responsibility, ultimately, for the decisions that will be made. So, often it will depend on the course of the pandemic in each jurisdiction. But, there is a collective will amongst all education ministers for us to be able to ensure that all those Year 12 students will be able to complete their studies this year, and then go on to university, vocational education, or employment next year.
Barr: Okay. A lot of people affected. We’ll check back with you tomorrow. Thank you very much, Dan Tehan.
Tehan: Thanks Natalie.