National data collection and reporting
ACARA is responsible for collecting, managing, analysing, evaluating and reporting statistical and related information about educational outcomes.
This includes the development of national key performance measures for reporting the performance of Australian schooling. ACARA has developed and education ministers have approved the Measurement Framework for Schooling in Australia 2015 (PDF 272 kb), which lists and defines these measures for national reporting from the 2015 reporting year.
ACARA publishes the annual National Report on Schooling in Australia on behalf of Australian education ministers, meeting as the Education Council.
National reports on schooling in Australia
The National Report on Schooling in Australia 2014 is the sixth report on progress towards the Melbourne Declaration on Educational Goals for Young Australians.
The report specifically addresses education ministers’ Commitment to Action in the eight interrelated areas identified in the Melbourne Declaration, by summarising national initiatives and achievements in terms of these areas. It also reports on the nationally agreed key performance measures for student participation, achievement, and attainment and provides statistics on school and staff numbers, student enrolments and school funding.
The National Report on Schooling in Australia data portal is a new component of the 2014 report, replacing the Additional statistics compendium of previous years. 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 view and download data at the national level, but also by state and territory, by school sector, by calendar year and by other breakdowns such as gender and Indigenous status.
The National Report on Schooling in Australia 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013 are also published on the ACARA website. View previous reports (1989–2008) on the SCSEEC website.
ACARA is also responsible for collecting data from schools for the purpose of accountability and reporting, research and analysis, and resource allocation. In January 2010, information on individual schools was published on the My School website for the first time. In December 2014, an additional page showing student attendance data for Years 1–10 was added to the site.
The current version of My School was released in March 2017. This expanded version of the site provides parents and the community with information about NAPLAN performance as well as information about school finances and school communities. My School contains quality data that allow for comparison of results between schools with students from similar socio-educational backgrounds, using the index of community socio-educational advantage (ICSEA) developed by ACARA.
To read more about My School, visit the 'My School' page of the ACARA website as well as My School website itself.
NAPLAN and NAP sample assessment national reports
ACARA also publishes the national reports for the National Assessment Program – literacy and numeracy (NAPLAN) and for the National Assessment Program sample assessments. These reports can be viewed on ACARA’s National Assessment Program (NAP) website.
To report student outcomes data, nationally comparable student background data are needed. As agreed by education ministers, ACARA has developed the Data Standards Manual: Student Background Characteristics to provide information to assist schools and school systems to collect consistent student background information from parents.
Students attendance data
From the 2014 year onwards, nationally comparable student attendance data are also being collected, as set out in the National Standards for Student Attendance Data Reporting. All jurisdictions and sectors have agreed to provide student attendance data that comply with these standards, with the non-government sectors (independent and Catholic schools) complying with the standards from 2013 onwards; government schools in all jurisdictions except NSW, from 2014; and NSW government schools, from 2016.