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Making STEM a primary priority

Making STEM a primary priority

Practical steps to improve the quality of science and mathematics teaching in Australian Primary Schools

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“Australia is at an inflexion point. We can choose more of the same and slip even further behind, or we can make major differences to how we teach science and maths”

Australia needs a STEM capable workforce if we are going to continue to prosper in an increasingly complex and competitive world. The economic case is compelling.

We require a secure pipeline of STEM talent graduating from the education system into the workforce, and this starts in our primary schools.

Yet many indicators point to systemic under-achievement in STEM education in our primary schools. In recent years, the performance of Australian students on international tests of science and mathematics attainment has declined in absolute and relative terms. Of even greater concern is the lack of progress many students make in their numeracy between years 3 and 5.

Unless we take the necessary steps to reverse the stagnation and decline in primary mathematics and science progress and achievement, we risk sub-optimising our future productivity, competitiveness and growth.

We present four key recommendations that are a call to action to government, teacher education providers and the teacher workforce to make STEM education a primary priority:

  • Provide access to a STEM specialist for every Australian primary school
  • Improve the standard of STEM professional development
  • Better use of data to enhance assessment and learning in STEM
  • Increase the quality of and quantity of STEM instruction

Contact us

Philip Le Feuvre

Director, PwC Australia

Tel: +61 2 8266 3661

David Sacks

Government and Public Sector Leader, PwC Australia

Tel: +61 3 8603 6151

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