Education Today Logo


Education Today Cover Browse Issue

NAPLAN another year, not much change

News Image

The release of NAPLAN results this year occurred with little fanfare and that has much to do with the very modest results achieved, the only group that seems to be making progress are the Year 3s and 5s and that too is modest.

Year 3s' and Year 5s' progress across the now nine years of testing has been most noticeable but not very spectacular, we’re talking an improvement of around 2%: in 2008 92.1% of Year 3s scored at or above the National Median Standard, in 2018 94.9% scored above the median.

Similarly, 91% of the Year 5s in 2008 scored above the median while in 2018, 93.9% ranked above the national median, which isn’t amazing.

Strangely the peak for both groups was 2013 where 95.3% Year 3s achieved a score above the median and 96.1% of Year 5s scored better than the national median. If we’re to take 2013 as a starting point that indicates a downward trajectory but a modest one.

For the older students in Year 7 and 9 the NAPLAN scores have been stubbornly around 94% and 92%  above the median respectively and arguably these students are the ones whose results have the most bearing on their futures and their performance in leaving exams.

The national profile is also stuck in one place with the prosperous and populous eastern seaboard states achieving the best results and those in the NT still achieving the lowest, although there is some progress there, but again nothing to write home about.

The criticism of NAPLAN is as old as the standardised test itself and that seems to be mounting as most elements of the test are questionable according to many experts in the area.

If you take into account the amount of resources, time and disruption to study that the tests represent it seems that there is very little bang being achieved for the buck.

The AEU has been very vocal about advocating that teachers drive student assessments at a school level and look for that vocality to be more pronounced as the 365 pages of the report are dissected in the coming days.

11 Apr 2019 | National
AITSL Stakeholder Survey now open News Image

Teachers, school leaders and the entire education sector can have their say in the 2019 Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership Survey which is open now. Read More

11 Apr 2019
Early career teachers get dramatic with NIDA News Image

NIDA continues to invest in the creative practice of early career teachers in primary and secondary schools with the 2019 Creative Ambassador’s Initiative.
Read More

10 Apr 2019 | National
New teachers love induction support app News Image

Downloaded more than 17,000 times, the AITSL My Induction app offers expert advice, answers to frequently asked questions and allows new teachers to track their professional wellbeing. Read More

10 Apr 2019 | National
Reform of preschools front and centre in election period News Image

Research shows that two years of quality preschool sets a child up for success, and happily the issue is gaining traction with politicians.
Read More

10 Apr 2019 | National
Domestic violence causes homelessness News Image

The number of people seeking help from homelessness services due to domestic and family violence has risen in recent years but only 4% of those who approached a homelessness service for long-term housing actually received it. Read More