NEW ZEALAND'S EDUCATIONAL SYLLABUS.
MISUNDERSTOOD BY INSPECTORS. MINISTER ON THE RECENT EXAMINATIONS. INEQUALITY IN PAPER"-'. A question from a "Star reporter to the Hon. G. Fowlds, Minister of Education, who arrived in Auckland this morning, led to quite an interesting discourse upon very important phases of education.
In reply to the reporter, the Minister stated that a deputation from the Thames branch of the New Zealand Teachers' Institute waited on him last, night at the Thames, and offered their congratulations respecting the Education Bill which passed last session and the great relief that it had brought to the teachers in general. They made several suggestions with reference to improvements in the syllabus, and these will be carefully considered when the syllabus comes up for revision next vcar.
"All educationalists." continued the Minister, "are agreed that it is undesirable to chop and change the syllabus about too frequently. We propose to have a conference of educationalists early next year, when the experience gained in the working of the syllabus will be fully considered, and the suggested improvements will receive full consideration.
"One of the difficulties," proceeded the Minister, "with reference to the syllabus in the Auckland district is that some of the inspetcors have failed to grasp the true, spirit of the syllabus, and have insisted on examining the children on any subject mentioned in the 'syllabus-, whereas the intention of the syllabus was to give freedom to the teacher to work out a scheme of work of his own fiom the suggestions contained in the syllabus. And the inspectors ought to see teaching within the teachers' scheme has been thoroughly effective, and to suggest to the teacher improvements to the scheme." With reference to the examination papers, particularly arithmetic papers, which caused considerable trouble at the
j recent examinations for competency and j proficiency certificates, Mr. Fowlds said that he was not sure how far the responsibility lay on the Department or on the officers of the Education Board: but :he was quite certain that there was a i very considerable inequality in the work m the different papers given' to the various children for the same examination. He intended to make inquiry to , see what steps could be taken to secure greater uniformity in the work allotted : for these examinations.
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