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NAPLAN can be a stressful time for both you and and your child.  Each year, Australian students in years 3, 5, 7 and 9 are required to sit the NAPLAN test. The test is aimed at examining general abilities in reading, writing, spelling, and numeracy to ensure students across Australia are meeting national literacy and numeracy standards.

10 things you should know about NAPLAN

What does NAPLAN stand for?

NAPLAN stands for National Assessment Program – Literacy And Numeracy

Why was it created?

NAPLAN began in 2008 and was created to provide a standardised test to test Australian students’ skills in both literacy and numeracy which have been developed over time through the school curriculum.

Who sits it?

NAPLAN is an annual assessment for students in Years 3, 5, 7 and 9. Over 1 million students sit the tests each year according to ACARA (Australian Curriculum and Assessment Reporting Authority). Students in these year levels in all schools, whether government or non government, are expected to participate, however it is not compulsory.

What is tested?

• NAPLAN is made up of four separate assessment areas: Reading, Writing, Language (spelling, grammar and punctuation) and Numeracy.

When is it?

It is held annually in May, and is run over three days. For current dates, visit the NAPLAN website.

If a student is absent during any of the tests, schools are allowed to administer the missed test on another designated day. If the student is absent on that day as well, the student will not be assessed.

Who marks it?

For multiple choice questions, the student’s answers are scanned and marked electronically. All other responses, including the writing task, are marked by independent markers, who are qualified and experienced teachers who undergo a training program each year. This is all overseen by ACARA but each State is responsible for administering and marking the tests.

How does it help teachers?

NAPLAN results are able to help teachers to extend higher performers as well as to readily identify those children who might need some extra support. It means that schools are able to map student progress and identify strengths and weaknesses in the teaching programs and to set measurable goals for future planning. However, it must be remembered that NAPLAN is only one aspect of assessment of a child’s learning and is not a replacement of ongoing and extensive assessment by each teacher.

Do I receive a report about my child’s performance?

Reports are sent to your child’s school later in the year then the school will send them on to you. If you do not receive a report, contact your school. All results are strictly confidential.

So hopefully these points will help to answer some of your questions regarding NAPLAN. If you have further questions, the best place to start with is your child’s school or check the Naplan Website. 

NAPLAN is moving online. This means moving NAPLAN from the current paper-based tests to computer-based assessments. The transition to NAPLAN online will commence from 2018.

NAPLAN Preparation Course

  • As part of our January Head Start Program and our April Skills Development Program we offer two six hour Naplan Preparation courses, one six hour course for Literacy and another 6 hour course for Numeracy. The course will familiarises your child with NAPLAN style questions with help from specialist teachers who will refine your child's skills in literacy and numeracy and hone in on recurring problem areas prior to the Naplan tests in May.

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