Vic Education says too many donuts cause failure to learn

A court case is running in Victoria (see http://a4.org.au/a4/node/481) about education for a child with a disability. So far the department has said that the reason for the young man’s failure to learn is that, he ate too many donuts.

An expert witness for the Education Department told the court said standardised assessments are not as good as unwritten teacher observations because, teachers have a special gift.

The department lawyers and their expert witness said that people with an intellectual disability don’t learn, so no matter what you do with them they don’t improve.

On 14/5/2012, the department expert witness was questioned whether a student with a pragmatic speech disorder with 2 standard deviation from the normal should have received speech therapy, the response was no that they didn’t need speech therapy [a "pragmatic speech disorder" is a disorder that is diagnosed by and relates entirely to speech therapy/pathology].

This case will continue until 25/5/2012. It is important to have parents and others attend the hearing to help better inform the general community how the education department treats students with a disability.

The education department is responding to questions from the student’s lawyers. They said:

  • 16/5 — one of the school staff members allegedly admitted not being aware that the student had a disability and admitted to not have read his school file;
  • 17/5 — the teacher under oath allegedly said, that help from speech pathologists and psychologists was not needed because teachers are very experienced;
  • 17/5 — when asked why the student is unable to read, write and do very basic maths, the teacher blamed the father.

More "enlightenment" can be expected ...

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  • 17/5 — under oath the teacher allegedly said, that help from speech pathologists and psychologists was not needed because teachers are very experienced. When asked why the student is unable to read, write and do very basic maths, the teacher blamed the father.
  • 18/5 — the school principal on the stand allegedly said that “evidence base” is not just research, it is evidence based if the teacher can see that it is working with the student. “see” and “working,” were not defined by the witness.
  • 18/5 — The principal allegedly went onto say that the reason the student could not be reading assessed at age 12yrs (student now 18) was that he was non compliant badly behaved and blamed the father. The student (18 yrs) is as literate as a 6 year old.
  • 22/5 — there was a clear statement by the Assistant Director of Disability and Student Welfare, Vic Ed Department, that special schools engage the assistance from Martial Arts specialists to train staff to deal with students who display threatening behaviour. This practice is accepted by the Assistant Director. He said that staff needed to protect themselves from imminent danger.
    Here is a link with video to what Martial Arts trained teachers do with students with Autism - http://www.abc.net.au/7.30/content/2011/s3219518.htm - experts contradict Education officials

Wed 23/5 is a quiet day — there are no hearings this day.

Wrap up submissions to the judge will start 10.15am Thursday 24/5. This will be the last day. Then the waiting game begins.