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There’s concern our curriculum isn’t teaching our kids the basics

TOM ELLIOTT
Article image for There’s concern our curriculum isn’t teaching our kids the basics

There’s concern our curriculum isn’t teaching our kids the basics.

The curriculum is a lot broader than it used to be, with subjects such as environmental issues and Indigenous issues, but Tom Elliott fears it may come at the expense of key subjects like English and maths.

Dr Kevin Donnelly, who co-chaired the national curriculum review in 2014, told Tom part of the issue is our reliance on computers and calculators.

“That’s the argument why we’re going backwards,” Dr Donnelly said.

“A lot of the stronger-performing countries don’t have the calculators. They get kids to do mental arithmetic.”

Dr Donnelly said he hears about the effects every week at the Victoria Market.

“Shop owners tell me anyone under 30 can’t do mental arithmetic,” he said.

“You might buy half a kilo of bananas at $2.40 a kilo. They can’t work out it’s going to be $1.20, and they don’t know how to do the change.”

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TOM ELLIOTT
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