Start Right Now:  The critical role of teachers as upstanders, not bystanders, in the face of antisemitism in the classroom

By Melanie Ralph Last week, New South Wales Premier Dominic Perrottet fronted the media to apologise for wearing a Nazi costume to his 21st birthday party 20 years ago in 2003. Calling it a “terrible, terrible mistake,” the premier’s “genuine hope” is that “good will come of this.”  Whether you are forgiving enough to view […]

Undermining the expertise of teachers is a losing bet: why factory-model education reforms just won’t win

By Melanie Ralph Suites of ready-made resources may be a crutch for some teachers, but we stand to lose the best and brightest if we pursue more top-down reforms that would deskill teachers and kick a struggling profession while it’s already down. Recently, think tank The Grattan Institute published a report titled Ending the lesson […]

Money can’t buy status: Why Labor’s pitch to improve teaching is tragically misguided

Article published on ABC, Thu 19 May 2022 Amid the cacophony of noise that the 2022 federal election campaign has generated, Labor has tried to respond to alarming teacher shortages and the so-called “disaster” of student test scores by pledging to “pay students who get an ATAR of 80 or over up to $12,000 a year if they […]

Here’s a modest proposal for addressing the teacher shortage: stop denigrating teaching and teachers

By Melanie Ralph Published on ABC 22 Mar 2022. Link here: This term in Queensland, teachers have navigated a further wave of the Omicron variant of COVID-19, followed by devastating floods that have left many families without a home. Beyond Queensland, teachers across the country have summoned a kind of Sisyphean strength over the […]

Incentivising Quality: It Will Take More Than Carrots to Keep Teachers in Classrooms

By Melanie Ralph   Last year, along with many other Queensland teachers, I applied to be accredited as a Highly Accomplished Teacher (HAT).  The certification involves the submission of a portfolio which is annotated against the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers (APST), as well as classroom observations. At Stage 1, the portfolio is assessed by […]

Cultivating a reading culture

An interest of mine as a teacher is cultivating a culture of reading in my classroom. I believe the lack of time devoted to reading in schools is underpinned by an assumption that students read at home. Therefore, many teachers absolve themselves of the responsibility to ensure reading becomes part of students’ lifestyles and is […]