Sun newspapers Wed 1 Apr 2015
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Community newspapers -- Northern Territory -- Darwin Region
Nationwide News Pty. Limited
Copyright. Made available by the publisher under licence.
Nationwide News Pty. Limited
WEDNESDAY APRIL 1 2015 COMMUNITY 09 V1 - SUBE01Z01MA Tune in for the NAPLAN blues IN A few weeks the National Assessment Program for Literacy and Numeracy (NAPLAN) 2015 will be upon us. At this time each year schools begin to focus on the upcoming tests. Four school days in week five of term two are set aside for them. Once its over, staff and students should be able to relax, but many school leadership teams and staff become anxious as they wait months for results, which are released to schools and parents. While the time between the tests and the results has reduced, the Australia-wide analysis means months of waiting. The focus by schools on results often saturates staff meetings and professional discussions. Tests are taken by Year 3, 5, 7 and 9 students, but contribution to NAPLAN testing is the responsibility of all teachers because learning is a continuous process. Principal days with departmental leaders have a strong focus on NAPLAN issues of testing, measurement and evaluation. The efforts of school staff are regularly appraised and evaluated. NAPLAN results and trends since 2008 are part of this program. While NAPLAN is a measuring tool, there is a distinct danger that it can become the major focus of schools. In the weeks and months leading up to May each year, children in many schools are taken through past tests, often with monotonous repetition. NAPLAN-based text and exercise books have become major items for sale in bookstores and newsagents. In reality, teaching to the test has become a priority focus in the classrooms. Some years ago Tom Chappell released a song about NAPLAN with a line pointing to teachers: Your score is my score was the key lyric. Chappell sang about the fact that other subjects including music, the arts and physical education were being sidelined for NAPLAN. He bemoaned the fact that fun was being taken out of education. Some educators and certainly the Australian Curriculum and Assessment Reporting Authority downplay NAPLAN as being only a small cog in the assessment wheel. But the prime focus placed on these tests, including both elation and disappointment at school and system results, would indicate otherwise. NAPLAN dominates the educational horizon. ABOUT HENRY A Territorian since 1975, Henry has worked in remote, town and urban communities. He was principal at Leanyer School from 1992 until he retired in 2012. Age-friendly cities are becoming more important as our population ages. World for older people THE World Health Organisations Global AgeFriendly Cities project was conceived in 2005 after consultation with older people in 33 cities across the world. In focus groups, older people articulated the model of an age-friendly city based on their experience. A number of projects in Australia have seen councils and communities try to adapt to an age-friendly model. These include Clarence Council in Tasmania, which became an Age-Friendly Community in 2014; the City of Cockburn in WA is updating the Citys Age-Friendly Strategic Plan; the ACT funded a project asking older residents what makes their suburb more livable and NSW provided funding to 28 Councils for AgeFriendly projects. Unlike other jurisdictions, ageing in the Territory will be influenced by differing factors, with growth rates in over 65s of more than 5 per cent per year anticipated until 2041 as life expectancies continue to improve. By 2041 there will be close to 50,000 Territorians aged 65 years and older. One of the steps towards Age-Friendly Community status was taken by COTA NT, with part funding from Darwin Council, which asked the Northern Institute to undertake a seniors survey asking older people how their community could be improved to better meet their needs. All of this shows the emerging importance of AgeFriendly principles and that is why COTA NT saw it as so important to secure the support of the Ministers Seniors Advisory Council to include these principles in all future development of Active Ageing policies, acting chief executive Dean Dempsey said. To find out more about agefriendly cities visit www.agefriendlyworld.org To find out what is on at COTA NT, visit www.cotant. org.au CEO COTA NT, Graeme Bevis Banana Freckle Field Teams are working: Monday to Friday 8.30 am6.00 pm Saturday and Sunday 8.00 am4.00 pm To make a booking for destruction or to tell us if you do or DONT have banana plants, call the Hotline. Monday to Friday 8.00 am7.00 pm Saturday and Sunday 8.00 am4.00 pm To eradicate Banana Freckle we must destroy all banana plants in the Red Zones by 30 April 2015. We must eradicate Banana Freckle to grow healthy bananas in the future. The Banana Freckle Team will not be working 35 April, but will be available for bookings on Easter Monday, 6 April. Call the Banana Freckle Hotline on 1800 771 163 or email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.banana.nt.gov.au National Banana Freckle Eradication Program THE SUNS TRADES & SERVICES DIRECTORY is a great way to promote your business. It ofers cost efective advertising and places your products and services where they will get the most exposure. To see your business appear in the Trades & Service Directory call 8944 9949 Register online at www.championtrainers.net with HK Transfo mer 12 and you could w in a trip to Bali fo r 2! What you get for only $50p/wk 3 x 1hr group sessions per week for 12 weeks Including - Group Training sessions - Cooking Classes - Nutrition Seminars - Yoga/Tai Chi - Free Recipe Book Morning and Evening timeslots available Bring a friend and SAVE $50 or 2 and SAVE $100
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