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OP Not the Only Pathway

Letter to the Editor published in The Courier-Mail, 2 March 2018

No school should be judged solely on the achievements of one group of students at one point in time with only one measure, such as OP results (C-M, Mar 2).

Independent schools work closely with senior students and their families to support them in choosing the subjects or study options that best support their career aspirations.

Most independent schools place an emphasis on academic achievement. However, there are many pathways for students, including studying for an OP or an industry-recognised vocational education and training (VET) qualification, or both.

A concerted effort to ensure more students finish Year 12 has seen the expansion of VET and other options in schools. This has been reflected in the declining percentage of students choosing an OP pathway – down from about 80 per cent in the early 1990s to 50 per cent in 2017.

The picture on Year 12 outcomes needs to be a balanced one that recognises not only academic achievements through OP results, but also a range of outcomes such as VET as an equally legitimate and valuable learning pathway that gives students both a taste of the world of work and a headstart on a future career.

David Robertson
Executive Director
Independent Schools Queensland

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