In a recent media interview, Education Minister Simon Birmingham emphatically stated “Today’s results once again show that, despite significant funding growth, we are not getting sufficient improvements in student outcomes.” Why are Australian students still falling through the cracks?
It is estimated that up to 20% of Australian students are in this situation – falling through the cracks and not receiving the help they need. Speech Pathologist Tina Pickford reports “I spoke with a parent yesterday whose son is about to start high school next year and he’s just not ready. He’s been struggling all the way through school because he doesn’t have a diagnosed learning disability that attracts funding so he doesn’t receive any additional help at school.”
This is a common problem where students who fall below the benchmark don’t necessarily receive the extra learning support they need because they don’t have a diagnosed learning disability. Educators typically cite limited resources and knowledge of how to help struggling learners as the reasons why they find it challenging to address the individual learning needs of these students.
Is there a solution?
In the aforementioned interview, Senator Birmingham went on to say “We have excellent schools and teachers in Australia that successfully set the vast majority of our students up for life but we need to … focus on how record funding can best be used for the benefit of students … on evidence based measures that will get results for our students.”
Learning experts have come a long way in their understanding of why some students continue to struggle and evidence based learning programs such as Fast ForWord have been developed to assist these students. Yet, despite increased funding, many schools are still not implementing programs that are aimed at targeting the reason why struggling students continue to fall behind.
Why do struggling students continue to fall behind?
Put simply, these students often don’t have the tools they need in order to learn. In spite of normal intelligence, they may have weak cognitive, language and reading skills which are the foundations for learning any subject. Weak memory, attention and processing will affect performance across the board. Language difficulties often go undetected and lead to reading, writing and spelling difficulties. Without strong literacy, students will find it extremely hard to learn new information and to demonstrate their knowledge in upper primary and high school.
How Sonic Learning can help
At Sonic Learning, our team of health and education professionals is committed to improving cognitive, language and reading skills. We only provide programs which have been tried and tested, and have proudly helped thousands of Australian students. Our programs are effective and computerised so kids enjoy them. Best of all, it doesn’t cost the earth and you can do it from home.
Call us on 1300 135 334 for a free phone consultation to determine if our programs are suitable for your child.
Contact our team of health and education professionals on 1300 135 334 to discuss your child’s learning.