POSITION PAPER: Transforming STEM teaching in Australian primary schools: everybody’s business
A position paper released today by the Office of the Chief Scientist outlines steps that Australia can take to transform the teaching of science, mathematics and technology in primary schools.
“It is great teaching, more than any other attribute, which accounts for the success of the world’s best performing school systems.”
Focussing on the training, development and support of primary teachers, the paper advocates the following:
1. Raise the prestige and preparedness of teachers, by
(i) Attracting high achievers in STEM to primary school teaching.
(ii) Boosting the science, technology and mathematics in pre service teaching and increasing the rigour of pre-service courses
2. Transform STEM education in primary schools, by
(iii) Ensuring teachers in every school are supported by STEM specialist teachers
(iv) Creating a national professional development program in science, technology and mathematics.
(v) Educating principals to be leaders in STEM.
3. Think bold, collaborate and lead change.
“These are the steps we can take today to make great teaching of science, technology and mathematics the norm in Australian schools, and teaching a profession of choice for our high achievers.”