In the submission to the ACARA Review of the Australian Curriculum consultation, CSA has called for a curriculum of hope.
As ACARA seek to align the Australian Curriculum with the powerful and positive image of the young people we are seeking to form, outlined in the Alice Springs (Mparntwe) Education Declaration, we are encouraging a further refreshing and realigning of the current Consultation Curriculum to embody hope and a positive future for our nation.
The submission encourages ACARA to help move the Curriculum beyond the negative and divisive ‘culture wars’ to embrace the truth of the history and heritage of the First Nations People of Australia but also balance this with the, largely, Christian heritage introduced with British settlement.
As well as ensuring that the impact of faith on the shaping of our overwhelmingly religious Nation is incorporated in the form of some general religious education, we have called for a redefining of the ‘Asia and Australia’s Engagement with Asia’ cross-curriculum priority to include Pacific Island Nations and our near neighbours in Papua New Guinea and Timor Leste, with whom Australia has both a long history and clear future interest.
Having heard loud and clear of the concerns about the curriculum being overcrowded, we have proposed that the Consultation Curriculum be further modified to ensure that it does not take up more than 60% of the total teaching time available in schools, rather than the 80% originally sought in order to drive real change and ‘decluttering’ of the curriculum.
While welcoming the greater acknowledgement of the importance of engagement with parents, especially in sensitive areas of the Health and Physical Education Curriculum, we have called for further consultation with parents and work in this area. These are areas where it is vital that the language of Content Descriptions, Achievement Standards and Content Elaborations are written in language that is accessible and understandable by all parents. If there is going to be genuine partnership with parents, then there must be a common language to allow that partnership.
CSA commends the Education Council for commissioning this review and appreciates the work undertaken to date by ACARA, but there is more work to be done to ensure a final updated Australian Curriculum that can carry forward learning in the contemporary Australian context.
A copy of the submission and our Media Release can be downloaded below.
View Joint Submission
View Media Release