Obtaining Year 12 Qualification
Australian Bureau of Statistics advise below (http://www.abs.gov.au/AUSSTATS/abs@.nsf/Lookup/4102.0Main+Features40Mar+2011)
Within Australia, Year 12 attainment is regarded as a key factor in the formal development of an individual’s skills and knowledge. Those with Year 12 have a greater likelihood of continuing with further study, particularly in higher education, as well as entering into the workforce. Year 12 attainment contributes to the development of a skilled workforce, and in turn, to ongoing economic development and improved living conditions. The Council of Australian Governments’ National Education Agreement (2009) aims to lift the Year 12 or equivalent attainment rate for 20-24 year olds to 90% by 2015. (Endnote 1)
For students with a disability
Australian Bureau of Statistics – Year 12 – http://www.ausstats.abs.gov.au/ausstats/subscriber.nsf/LookupAttach/4102.0Publication23.03.115/$File/41020_Year12_Mar2011.pdf
Given the lack of knowledge and understanding of GLD students and their hidden disabilities, it is no wonder many of these students cease to complete their Year 12.
Given the way families are treated for daring to request medically recommended disability provisions of a school, school not believing medical reports and families having to go to Australain Human Rights , NSW Ombudsman and/or NSW Anti Discrimination Board to have disability provisions implemented for their child, it doesn’t make for a very good school life for the student in High School or their family.
School/family relations are strained because a parent has had no choice but to rightfully advocate for their child, in the hope that their child will receive some of the help they need and hopefully go onto succeed in obtaining their Year 12 qualification. Often even when parents go to Human Rights, schools will comply for a short while and then advise students have to ask for the disability provisions when they need it. These comments from schools highlights how teachers/schools do not understand a students disability, as often these students struggle to speak up for themselves or are embarrassed to ask for the provision as they feel having the provisions they are stupid or dumb. Often no consideration is given to the students well being at all.
When the HSC finally comes around, the student and parent will then find they often have to go through the same process again, to try and have the disability provisions the student has been using at school approved by BOSTES. Often BOSTES will ignore medical recommendations and rip a provisions away from the student, not heeding their own website in which they tell schools they must follow Disability Discrimination Act 1992 and Disability Standards in Education 2005. This I cannot believe BOSTES can get away with this.
Schools/BOSTES have a lot to answer for when a GLD student decides to drop out of school. Even moreso when a parent has been advocating for their child and the school have been made aware of their childs struggles. But schools/BOSTES are not held accountable it is always the parent, family and/or student blamed. It is never the school or school curriculum.
I truly believe there needs to be an independent body where parents can complain to, similar to the Financial Services Ombudsman, where no government departments are liaising with each other i.e. Parents complain to Human Rights which is a government run department about a school or BOSTES which are both government departments, really how can a family/student expect a “fair” outcome when both departments are governments. This is why so many things get swept under the carpet. There needs to be more transparency in education, policies and guidelines.
Unless issues for GLD students are addressed in schools/BOSTES, an understanding of hidden disabilities his known about by all teachers, an understanding of how disability provisions work for students, then how is The Council of Australian Governments going to lift the Year 12 or equivalent attainment rate for 20-24 year olds to 90% by 2015? I will be very interested to see these statisics.
Also interesting to note the Australian Government document Planning for Personalised Learning and Support: A National Resource based on the Disability Standards for Education 2005 – see – https://docs.education.gov.au/system/files/doc/other/planningforpersonalisedlearningandsupportnationalresource.pdf
Page 3 states “for students with disability and additional learning needs, reasonable adjustments should be made where required”
Page 5 Consults states “ seek expert advice, where relevant on the students needs; including medical, personal, physical, communication, sensory and learning needs”
Page 5 Plan & Implement personal learning – “seek any required equipment, assistive technology or additional resources for the students learning needs”
I fail to see how BOSTES comply with Disability Standards in Education 2005, when they remove disability provisions from a student, who has been using disability provisions since their medical professionals recommended them; BOSTES take the provision off the student for their HSC exam and expect the student to use a disability provision that BOSTES wants them to use, not what has been medically recommended, not what works for the student, not what the student wants.
BOSTES removing the students preferred provision is not allowing the student to show what they know, not allowing the student to sit an exam independently and expecting a student to use a provision that is not suited to them is less beneficial to the student. Is that considered a reasonable adjustment?? This is what our Disability Discrimination Acts and Disability Standards are for but BOSTES appear to ignore these, even when pointed out to them by family members.
How can this not be considered causing detriment to a childs future education and future job prospects? Again Disability Dscrimination Act 1992 that appear to be ignored – in particular Section 6 Indirect Discrimination http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/legis/cth/consol_act/dda1992264/s6.html
Is this BOSTES complying with Disability Discrimination Act 1992, Disability Standards in Education 2005, NSW Anti Discrimination Act 1977 and others? Hard to believe it would be. But until our Australian and NSW Government challenges BOSTES, this is not going to change for students anytime soon.