Australian Students Demonstrate Resilience in Latest PISA Results
Wednesday December 6 2024
The Australian Secondary Principals Association (ASPA) commends Australia’s students, teachers and school leaders for the resilience demonstrated in the latest Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) results. While most OECD countries saw significant declines in maths and science performance due to the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, Australia’s results stabilised, with slight improvements in our ranking among top performing countries.
ASPA President Andy Mison said, “These results highlight the incredible efforts of our educators to support students through two extremely difficult years of disruption. That we have held our ground while others slipped backwards is a testament to the skill and dedication of Australia’s teaching workforce.”
There are also positive signs around students’ sense of belonging and experiences of bullying. Measures of belonging improved since 2018, while bullying decreased by 5%.
However, the socioeconomic gap in achievement remains a major concern. Students from higher socioeconomic backgrounds continue to substantially outperform those from lower backgrounds. “Equity must be the number one priority in Australian education,” said Mr Mison. “We need a co-ordinated effort across all education systems to target resources where they are needed most. The goal must be to lift the performance of students from disadvantaged backgrounds.”
With the top performing countries in PISA showing what’s possible, ASPA believes Australia can aim higher. By focusing efforts on transforming investment into teaching and learning where it is needed most, system coherence and supporting school leaders and their communities Australia can close the equity gap and improve outcomes for all students.
“Singapore, Japan, Estonia and other high performers show investing in teachers, reducing complexity and targeting disadvantage makes a real difference. Australia has all the building blocks in place to match global leaders in education. The latest PISA results prove our students and educators have what it takes to get there,” concluded Mr Mison.