Overview of Part 1
- Schools and schooling
Overview of Part 2
- Policies and priorities
Overview of Part 3
- Measuring and reporting performance
The National Report on Schooling in Australia 2015 is the annual report on Australia’s school education sector. It has been produced by the Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA) on behalf of the Education Council.
The report highlights progress in 2015 towards the Melbourne Declaration on Educational Goals for Young Australians agreed by Australian education ministers in 2008.
The National Report on Schooling in Australia 2015 addresses the eight areas of commitment to action specified in the Melbourne Declaration. It describes the national policy and reporting context for school education in Australia and reports against the nationally agreed key performance measures (KPMs) for schooling, covering student participation, student achievement in national assessments and student transitions to further education and work. A selection of other statistical information on Australian schooling in 2015 and for the six-year period 2009–2015 is included in the report, with more extensive data sets accessible through the National Report on Schooling data portal.
The data portal provides readers with interactive access to a wide range of data on schooling in Australia, including general statistics on enrolments and funding, and data on the agreed KPMs. In most cases, the portal allows readers to download data by state and territory, by school sector, by calendar year and by other breakdowns, such as gender and Indigenous status, as well as at the national level.
This is the seventh annual National Report on Schooling in Australia to address the Melbourne Declaration and the twenty-seventh annual report overall.
Editions of the report for the years 2009–2014 are available on the ACARA website. Editions prior to 2009 are available on the SCSEEC website.
Overview of the report
Overview of Part 1
Part 1, ‘Schools and schooling’, provides information on the status of Australian schooling in 2015, including school, student and teacher numbers, school structures and funds used for school education.
In Australia, responsibility for school education rests mainly with the six state and two territory governments1.
All states and territories provide for 13 years of formal school education. Primary education, including a preparatory year, lasts for either seven or eight years and is followed by secondary education of six or five years respectively. Typically, schooling commences at age five, is compulsory from age six until age 17 (with provision for alternative study or work arrangements in the senior secondary years), and is completed at age 17 or 18. School structures and age requirements in states and territories are summarised in part 1.4.
The majority – 71 per cent – of schools are government schools, established and administered by state and territory governments through their education departments or authorities. The remaining 29 per cent are non-government schools, mostly associated with religious organisations. Non-government schools are established and operated under conditions determined by state and territory governments through their registration authorities. School numbers are shown in part 1.1.
Around two-thirds (65 per cent) of school students are enrolled in government schools and approximately one-third (35 per cent) in non-government schools. Part 1.2 reports on numbers of students by school sector, state and territory, and Indigenous status.
Staff numbers2 closely reflect enrolments, with 64 per cent of school teachers employed by the government school sector and 36 per cent by non-government schools. Part 1.3 reports on staff numbers and student/teacher ratios.
School, student and teacher numbers in 2015 are shown for Australia, and by state and territory in figure 1.
Schools are funded through a combination of state/territory government funding, Australian government funding, fees and charges and other parental/private contributions. School funding arrangements and data are reported in part 1.5.
1 New South Wales (NSW), Victoria (Vic.), Queensland (Qld), South Australia (SA), Western Australia (WA), Tasmania (Tas.), Northern Territory (NT) and Australian Capital Territory (ACT).
2 Full-time equivalent teaching staff.