To continually improve our education system in Australia, education ministers regularly look for opportunities to better educate students, through changes to curriculum and assessments of learning progress.
Although it can be difficult to keep pace with the changes, we welcome any change that improves the ability for our students to learn and grow.
One such recent change is to the timing of the NAPLAN tests, which will move to Term 1 from 2023. The test has always been held in the second week of May but will now move to mid-March.
For more on the reason for this change and general information on the NAPLAN tests, keep reading this blog.
From next year, the NAPLAN test window will be Wednesday 15 March to Monday 27 March 2023. Below are the key test window dates over the next few years:
The existing triennial National Assessment Program (NAP) sample assessments for Years 6 and 10 will also move from October to Term 2. The NAP sample assessments test students’ skills and understanding in science literacy, civics and citizenship and information and communication technology literacy. Currently, only selected groups of students participate in these sample assessments. From 2024, through a three-year phased approach, the sample assessments will be available on an opt-in basis for any school that chooses to participate.
Why would schools choose to participate? To receive additional information about how well their students are performing in the areas of science, civics and citizenship and digital literacy to help refine their teaching methods.
Students will now sit these tests earlier so that results are available to education authorities earlier in the year to inform teaching and learning programs. It will also allow teachers to better assess student learning needs and determine the appropriate support for them in the year ahead.
If you’re not yet familiar with NAPLAN, it stands for the National Assessment Program – Literacy and Numeracy. It’s an annual assessment for students in Years 3, 5, 7 and 9. For students in these year groups, the tests typically take up to one week of the school year.
NAPLAN is a national population test and provides a nationwide benchmark to assess whether students are developing the appropriate foundational literacy and numeracy skills needed to be productive members of the community.
The tests cover four major areas:
The intent is to assess content, knowledge and skills that students have learned in their prior year at school. Therefore, it is aligned to the Australian Curriculum for English and Mathematics.
Every school is required to administer NAPLAN but parents who do not wish for their students to sit the test can choose to opt out. Given the benefits and the insights it offers, almost all Australian school students sit the NAPLAN tests.
NAPLAN tests are useful for tracking student progress over time from a national level through to individual students.
The National Assessment Program provides a measure for governments, education authorities, schools and the community to determine if students are meeting key educational outcomes.
At the national level, test outcomes enable policy makers to understand how students are performing across the board and develop any needed changes to the education system to improve performance. For each school, results can reveal how a school is performing relative to comparable schools, allowing them to identify strengths and weaknesses and address areas for improvement.
For parents, NAPLAN results can help you remain informed about how your child is progressing on their learning journey compared to the national standard and to peers. Overall school results in the NAPLAN tests can also help you make an educated decision about where to send your child to school.
There are several ways you can help your child perform well, as outlined in a previous blog ‘How to get the most out of your child’s next NAPLAN tests’.
One way to support your child to succeed in NAPLAN is with Global Education Academy’s four-day NAPLAN holiday course for students in Years 3 and 5. The course covers the following areas:
By participating in the course, your child will:
To align with the change in the NAPLAN test window, our NAPLAN preparation course has now moved from being a 1-week course in the April school holidays to a 6-week intensive course with 3-hour classes on Fridays from week 1 to week 6 of Term 1.
To secure a spot for your child in 2023, visit our website here for more information. The sooner you enrol your child, the better as there are limited spots available!