A Shift in Teaching Methods Boosts HSC Results

Sydney high schools among most-improved 2023 HSC NSW public schools.
Apr 2, 2024
Lifting students' literacy and numeracy before year 12 has boosted leaving exam results.

A move to explicit teaching has delivered strong HSC results for at least one Sydney school.

Killarney Heights High in north Sydney saw strong improvement in its 2023 HSC results in both top two and three band data, thanks in part to an ongoing focus on explicit teaching in literacy, particularly writing of complex sentences.

In the southern Sydney region, Matraville Sports High School enjoyed an uplift in its 2023 HSC results through top three band data. The school's SPIN tutorial program for year 11 and 12 students has now been running for seven years. Marrickville High also enjoyed strong improvement in top three bands across all HSC subjects. The school has continued to expand its curriculum offerings, providing a greater number of advanced and extension courses for students, along with an embedded literacy focus in years 9 and 10 to support exam readiness.

In the south-west, Sylvania High School improved across both top two and three band HSC data. Sylvania High has an explicit and structured writing program for students from years 7 to 10 to ensure its year 11 and 12 students are well prepared for the academic rigours of writing in the HSC. Hawkesbury High School also enjoyed strong improvement across top two and top three HSC bands.

More than a dozen Sydney schools are among the NSW public high schools that have shown most improvement in their 2023 Higher School Certificate (HSC) results.

The Department used top two and top three band HSC data from the Centre of Education Statistics and Evaluation (CESE) to recognise its most improved schools. Top two bands include bands 5 and 6 for HSC standard courses and E3 and E4 for extension courses, while top three bands include bands 4-6 (standard) and E2-E4 (extension).

Other most improved schools in the Sydney region included:
•    Blacktown Boys High School (top two and three bands)
•    Blacktown Girls High School (top two bands)
•    Bossley Park High School (top two bands)
•    Dulwich High School of Visual Arts and Design (top two bands)
•    Chatswood High School (top three bands)
•    Glenwood High School (top three bands)
•    Granville Boys High School (top three bands)
•    Ingleburn High School (top three bands)
•    Kingswood High School (top three bands)
•    Rose Bay Secondary College (top three bands)
•    Sarah Redfern High School (top three bands)

There are 2217 public schools in NSW with more than 800,000 students, including about 330,000 high school students.   

Image by Vincent Rivaud