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ACARA CEO Rob Randall talks about NAPLAN (MP3 838 kb)
The National Assessment Program – Literacy and Numeracy, or NAPLAN, as it is commonly called, is used by governments, education authorities and schools to determine whether young Australians are meeting important educational goals in literacy and numeracy.As children progress through their school years, it is important that checks are made along the way to see how well they are learning the skills of reading, writing and mathematics. These are essential skills that will set students on the path to success as adults.Naplan lets us see how we are going at a student, school and a national level in the fundamentally important areas of literacy and numeracy. NAPLAN assesses literacy and numeracy skills that students are already learning day-to-day through the school curriculum. NAPLAN test items or questions are similar to those that occur in regular classroom learning and assessment.On its own, students cannot study specifically for NAPLAN – nor are they expected to do so. The best preparation for NAPLAN is the study of a broad, rich curriculum. However, some familiarisation of the test – so that students know what to expect - is helpful, particularly for year 3 students.ACARA does not recommend excessive use of practice tests. The best preparation is the study of a broad, rich curriculum.If parents have any concerns about NAPLAN, I encourage them to talk to their child’s teacher who knows the child’s learning best.As a parent, you can help your child by treating NAPLAN test days just like any other school day. Some nervousness is natural – just as your child may be nervous with other school or life events.
NAPLAN is not a pass or fail test. It simply looks at what level students are achieving in literacy and numeracy compared with their peers throughout Australia.