The Australian government has decided parents are entitled to all pertinent information not merely concerning their child’s performance in school, but how does the school rank in education categories. ACT Education Minister Andrew Barr said “parents and carers will now have more information bout their child’s progress than ever before, and we encourage parents and carers to use this information to speak with their child’s teacher.” However, Education Minister Julia Gillard also raised the issue of comparing school performance. On one hand, she said, “if one school was performing better than another , the information might reveal why, allowing the best practice to spread from one to another.”
This issue raises many questions. A basic assumption is test scores reveal which is a “performing” or “not performing” school. Despite promises, in the end, parents will obtain information concerning test results and place greater demands on schools to improve test scores. There are a host of other factors which also should be available ranging from funding to experience levels of teachers. Information is important to any parent, but educators must also deal with issues pertaining to the meaning and goals of education.