The Semester Two, 2020 edition of the JPL was produced during the Covid 19 pandemic. The impact of this serious health crisis has certainly influenced the tone of our JPL articles. Some of the articles in this edition directly reference the pandemic. In particular, Sharan Burrow (General Secretary of the International Trade Union Confederation) discusses the global effects of the pandemic and argues why public education has to be an essential part of any new social contract (internationally and nationally) that is formed.
Amy Harriman explores the role of collegial leadership within a PD H PE faculty and the wider school context. The concept of Critical Literacy is explained by Kathy Rushton and Joanne Rossbridge. They examine the reasons why it is so important to imbed a critical literacy focus within classroom pedagogy.
The edition then expands to matters concerning all teachers across our public education system, including Mel Smith’s exploration of ways of supporting our LGBTIQ students (with particular emphasis on their wellbeing and sense of belonging at school). Leeanda Smith’s article, calling for a refocus on women and their right to be active participants in leadership roles, is also of significance.
Also included are the findings from some noteworthy academic research projects. Professor Jim Tognolini (from the Centre for Educational Measurement and Assessment [University of Sydney]) explains the nature of assessment and data literacy. He asserts the primacy of teacher judgement within the assessment process, shares the research - based reasons for the creation of CEMA’s professional learning modules on Assessment and Data Literacy and encourages teachers to become involved in them. Professor Pasi Sahlberg and Amy Graham (from the Gonski Institute [UNSW]) present the findings of their Growing Up Digital Australia research. Dr Karen Maras (from the School of Education UNSW) shares the results of her project entitled Teaching and Assessing Students' Critical and Creative Thinking Skills in Visual Arts Years 7-10.
The editions ends with Maurie Mulheron (the immediate former President of the NSW Teachers Federation) reflecting on the development of, and achievement of, public education.