Thursday, 21 February 2019
Moreton Electorate: Schools
In Brisbane, every student and every one of their parents know that when the jacarandas are blooming it means one thing: the end-of-year exams. For year 12 students, those last exams bring with them a lot of anxiety about whether they'll achieve the score they need to continue their chosen study path. While it's a student's work that is marked, the support that the school provides during those vital final years of school is crucial to each student's success. I'm proud of all the schools in my electorate and love visiting them throughout the year. As a former teacher, I love to go along and teach a few lessons.
In December, many of those year 12 students are in a fluster, waiting for their OP score to arrive, but it's in January that the school principals have their own anxious moments, waiting for the list of school rankings to be released. I'm quick to acknowledge that the number of OP students in a school is only one measure of that school, and some would say one measure at a point in time. Many schools in my electorate are excellent educational facilities with incredible programs tailored to suit their students and their needs and aspirations. However, unfortunately, newspapers do rank schools each year according to the OP results of their students. And this year St Aidan's Anglican Girls' School—
Mrs Prentice interjecting —
I'll take that interjection from the member for Ryan because I know many in her electorate send students over the river to St Aidan's. St Aidan's was ranked 10th in Queensland, with almost 42 per cent of OP eligible St Aidan's students receiving a score between one and five. I congratulate all the girls on their hard work and achievement. I congratulate Principal Toni Riordan for her leadership in supporting those students and all of her staff.
Another school in my electorate that has achieved amazing results this year is Corinda State High School. Under the leadership of Principal Helen Jamieson, who I used to teach with many years ago—not that many, Helen—Corinda State High School has been ranked No. 1 in the top 20 most-improved schools. We know that means hard work. Corinda State High School was ranked 245 in 2008 and it is now ranked 106. That's a remarkable achievement, achieved under Helen. This year, 22 per cent of OP eligible students at Corinda State High School received an OP between one and five. I congratulate the students at Corinda State High School, Principal Helen Jamieson for her leadership, and her hardworking team for supporting these students.
Helen was quoted in The Courier-Mail as saying: 'My mission was to get them up there with the best, and it's about believing in the kids.' I'm sure all of us, on both sides of the chamber, would want to have a principal who believes in students and wants them to get up there with the best. That's why I'm very proud that Labor announced this week that policies would have encouraged principals, like Helen and Toni, to have chosen teaching as a vocation in the first place. For the teachers already in our classrooms, Labor will rejuvenate the Highly Accomplished and Lead Teacher program that provides a career path for teachers, recognises exceptional teaching and uses the skills of exceptional teachers to guide and mentor their colleagues.