Literacy and numeracy improve at struggle street school
LISMORE’S Albert Park Public School has joined other socio-economically disadvantaged schools across the state by improving its 2015 NAPLAN results.
Figures released on the My School website last week show the Lismore school joined other disadvantaged schools in regional areas such as Lightning Ridge and Walgett in achieving performance gains – determined by comparing Year 5 NAPLAN results with the same students’ Year 3 results.
Albert Park, a progressive 57-student school with 33% of enrolments being indigenous children, is one of 300 schools which secured an instructional leader under the Early Action For Success program since 2012.
The Federally-funded program provides schools performing in the lowest quartile of the state in literacy and numeracy with extra resources.
Principal Jenni Smedley attributed Albert Park’s literacy and numeracy gains largely to the program.
“Our gains can’t be graphed on the My School website because our school is too small, but things we have been doing since having an instructional leader is upskilling teachers so they are aware of where each child is individually and they are teaching explicitly to that child,” she said.
“That is showing up on what we term our growth in NAPLAN, which is matched from Year 3 to 5. When compared to the rest of the state we’re doing very well. Children often come to us with a deficit and we are bringing their literacy and numeracy levels up.”
Brunswick Heads Public School, which sits just above the state average in terms of socio-educational advantage, was also flagged as achieving above average gains in its NAPLAN results.
“We would attribute our gains with high quality teaching,” said principal Trisha Parker. “Our teachers use assessment data very well to assess opportunities for growth for each child. They are very reflective practitioners.”
NAPLAN results were up across New South Wales this year.
Data released by the Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority shows 95.5% of NSW’s Year 3 students scored at or above the national minimum standard.
Hundreds of schools nationally demonstrated substantial growth in NAPLAN scores when compared with previous years.
The writing skills of the youngest NAPLAN students also improved over the past year.