The Australian Curriculum Technologies (including Design and Technologies and Digital Technologies) has been endorsed but what does this mean for teachers and students of technology education in NSW?
ACARA announced on Friday 18 September that the Education Council has endorsed Australian Curriculum in eight learning areas. One of those 8 learning areas is Technologies.
This endorsement means that each State and Territory can now make decisions about the use of the Australian Curriculum in their schools.
In NSW we do not teach using ACARA Australian Curriculum. We teach from NSW Board of Studies, Teaching and Educational Standards (BOSTES) K-6 Science and Technology 7-10 Technology subject syllabuses.
In NSW, BOSTES is responsible for developing, in close consultation with teachers and other stakeholders, the mandatory curriculum, K–12, to be taught in NSW schools.
The ACARA announcement means that BOSTES can now continue to review their priorities for curriculum renewal as we approach 2016. It does not automatically mean BOSTES will identify Technologies as a priority or begin the process for syllabus review or redevelopment. We wait …
So what does this announcement mean for NSW teachers and students of Technology subjects 7 to 10?
In NSW, the Board of Studies, Teaching and Educational Standards (BOSTES) is responsible for advising the NSW Minister for Education on the appropriateness of curriculum for NSW schools and the structure and process of its implementation, including with regard to the Australian curriculum.
BOSTES will make decisions about its syllabus development process for all learning areas. There are a number of learning areas in NSW still waiting for decisions from BOSTES regarding the review of their syllabus. Technologies is one of these areas.
BOSTES will follow its regular cycle of curriculum evaluation and review which will identify priorities for curriculum renewal. When a current syllabus or learning area is identified for renewal BOSTES will take the opportunity to incorporate Australian curriculum content. (Board of Studies, 31 July 2012)
So far decisions have been made regarding English, Science, Maths and History and syllabus development has been completed and implemented in NSW schools. Recent decisions on Geography have also been made. Syllabuses for these learning areas have been developed in consultation with stakeholders and features of ACARA’s Australian Curriculum for these learning areas were incorporated into the new syllabuses.
It has been stated many time before in newsletters, websites and on social media, that teachers of Technology subjects in NSW schools K-10 are to continue teaching the current NSW BOSTES syllabus. The announcement from ACARA does not change our situation.
The Technology Education, Inspector Peter Thompson through social media has confirmed there are no changes to syllabus and NSW schools will continue to use current K-6 and 7-10 Technology syllabuses in 2016. Peter will continue to communicate the BOSTES information and updates regarding the status and position of Technology curriculum in NSW to teachers through a variety of avenues. Look for opportunities to engage with this information.
When the time comes for Technologies, NSW will implement the Australian Curriculum through new syllabuses. New syllabuses will include the Australian curriculum and retain many of the features familiar to NSW teachers. BOSTES will provide notification and information about changes to NSW syllabuses as they are approved by the NSW Minister for Education.
Information and announcements can be confusing. So can silence when there is no action. We continue to receive emails and phone calls from teachers, Head Teachers, Assistant Principals, Deputy Principals and Principals regarding the status and timing of a New Technologies syllabus incorporating the Australian Curriculum Design and Technologies and Digital Technologies.
Teachers are encouraged to stay across the most up to date information from reliable sources. BOSTES Inspector Technology Education is the MOST reliable source. Contact Peter Thompson as the Inspector Technology Exucation for all syllabus, assessment or examination questions. Educational Sectors work closely with the BOSTES Inspector and will also communicate up to date information and answer questions.
There are a number of people, organisations and associations sharing information through conferences, social media and newsletters. There are also a number of organisations and agencies who are developing resources to support implementation of the Australian Curriculum.
NSW teachers are advised to review all information, resources and professional learning to ensure they are mapped to the relvant current Technology syllabus.
We all have a role to provide clear and current information to reduce confusion. Please share this information with colleagues.
Thanks to NSW DoE PDHPE staff