Will Hodgman

Premier of Tasmania

31 October 2017

Jeremy Rockliff, Minister for Education and Training

Annual Report confirms more teachers under a Hodgman Liberal Government

The Department of Education’s Annual Report for 2016-17 shows that public education in Tasmania is going from strength to strength.

We are fixing a system that was broken under the former Government, to help more Tasmanian students reach their full potential through education.  Highlights include:

  • A year on year increase of teachers – consistent with 107 more teachers across the Department since we came to Government; with 74 more school support staff (headcount) across the Department in 2016-17 than the previous year, including 54 more Teacher Assistants;
  • The successful School Health Nurse Program, reinstating school nurses lost under Labor - 20 FTE nurses employed across 81 schools, expanding into district schools in 2017-18;
  • Our goal of being at or above the national average on every NAPLAN measurement by 2020 is working – by employing an additional 25 Literacy and Numeracy Specialists, NAPLAN results are improving and we are closing the gap to Australia in 16 of the 20 assessments between 2013 and 2016, with our Learning in Families Together (LIFT) initiative continuing to support targeted schools with the highest educational need;
  • The success of our high school extensions as a means to increase retention and attainment – with increased choice in where students can complete Year 11 and 12, and with a total of 30 schools having extended to Year 11 and 12 in 2017, 533 students studying Year 11 and 12 at the 30 extension schools as of Term 1 2017;
  • An increase in attainment across all sectors - in 2016, 56.4 per cent of 15-19 year old Tasmanian students received their TCE, an improvement of around 10 per cent since 2012;
  • The Year 10 to 11 Direct Retention Rate has been at 87 per cent for the last three years, which is a 10-year high;
  • Developing an education system with more support for students with disability such as formalising dual enrolment for students with a disability to access both mainstream and support schools, Government and non-Government, to address their individual learning needs, and extending the successful Autism Class Support Program already running at Lindisfarne North Primary School  and Rose Bay High School from mid- 2017; and
  • Our biggest investment in school infrastructure in over 20 years- our capital investment means $110 million is being invested over four years to upgrade facilities at schools around the state, with a number of key projects completed in the financial year.

There is no doubt that Tasmania has changed for the better since the election, but there is still more work to be done. While we have made great progress with our Year 11 and 12 high school extensions, we will push for even more improvements with a target of increasing the retention rate of Year 10-12 students to at or above the national average by 2022, and to have 75 per cent of all students in Year 12 complete their TCE by 2022.

This is in stark contrast to the lack of a plan or policy from Labor, whose record includes the lowest educational outcomes in the country and their efforts to forcibly close 20 schools - you simply cannot trust Labor.

The Hodgman Liberal Government will continue to Build Your Future to ensure Tasmanian students are job-ready, with the biggest transformation of our education system in half a century.

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