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April 2018

naplan_logo NAPLAN 2018

NAPLAN starts on Tuesday 15 May. Over a million Year 3, 5, 7 and 9 students across the country will participate in the annual literacy and numeracy assessments, with some taking NAPLAN online for the first time. 

NAPLAN is a point-in-time assessment to help parents see how their child, compared with the rest of Australia’s children, is progressing in the fundamental skills of literacy and numeracy. The information NAPLAN provides supports conversations between parents, teachers and schools, working together to help children achieve their full potential. 

For educators, NAPLAN data can support school improvement processes by enabling teachers to monitor their students’ progress over time against a national measure. In fact, NAPLAN is the only national literacy and numeracy assessment that allows parents and teachers to see this progress over a period of years. When NAPLAN data are used in combination with other school-based assessments, these can provide teachers with diagnostic information for planning their teaching programs, and guiding and supporting their students’ learning journey. You can read more on our website about how teachers have used NAPLAN data to improve the literacy and numeracy outcomes at their schools

Literacy and numeracy are fundamentally important for all young people; however, NAPLAN is not, and should never be, the sole measure of a child’s achievement at a school or of the success of a school. School curriculum has much to offer. All students should have an opportunity to study a rich curriculum for literature, science, humanities and social sciences, technology, health and physical education, languages, and the arts.

As NAPLAN is aligned to the Australian Curriculum: English and Mathematics, the literacy and numeracy skills that teachers teach in the classroom are what students are tested on in NAPLAN – so the best preparation is for teachers and students to continue doing what they do each day. 

For more information on NAPLAN, visit the NAP website.  

NAPLAN Online: benefits and features 

In 2018, for the first time, some students will sit NAPLAN online. The goal is to have all students undertake NAPLAN online by 2020.

Find out more about the main benefits and features of NAPLAN Online via these online resources:

Watch a video that explains the substantial benefits NAPLAN Online provides for students and teachers including more precise information and a more engaging experience.

Check out the public demonstration site to become familiar with the types of questions and related functionalities available in the NAPLAN Online assessment.

Watch a video that explains tailored testing, where the test automatically adapts to student performance and asks questions that match the student achievement level, allowing the student to demonstrate their knowledge.

Download the test window infographic to see the testing window for NAPLAN Online is extended from three to nine days to provide flexibility in scheduling and to accommodate schools that may have fewer devices.

Check out the NAPLAN Online and protecting privacy infographic that outlines the policies and procedures in place to ensure personal information is protected in the online environment.

For more information on NAPLAN’s move online, check our comprehensive list of FAQs or email [email protected]


NAPLAN: a joint statement from parent organisations

The Australian Parents Council, the Australian Council of State School Organisations and the Isolated Children’s Parents’ Association have issued the following statement on behalf of Australian parents regarding NAPLAN.

GonskyReport of the Review to Achieve Educational Excellence in Australian Schools

ACARA welcomes the discussion, findings and recommendations of the Gonski report: Through Growth to Achievement: Report of the Review to Achieve Educational Excellence in Australian Schools.

The report recommends initiatives that build on and enhance the work ACARA has achieved over the last 10 years under the direction of the Education Council.

ACARA looks forward to further announcements from the Australian Government and the Education Council regarding the findings and recommendations contained in the report, and working towards our mission to improve the learning of all young Australians through world-class school curriculum, assessment and reporting. 

ACARA welcomes our new Director, Curriculum 

ACARA welcomes Ms Janet Davy who has been appointed as Director of Curriculum.

Janet Davy

Ms Davy comes to ACARA from the position of Deputy Secretary within the NSW Department of Education, which followed her role as Group Manager for Curriculum, Assessment and Teaching in the Australian Government Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations and prior to that, Secretary of the ACT Department of Education.

As with many of ACARA's staff, Ms Davy began her career as a teacher, teaching Personal Development, Health and Physical Education (PDHPE) to Sydney secondary students.

Janet held various senior curriculum roles in the Department and the NSW Board of Studies. She also worked with AusAID (Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands), undertaking high-level change management roles, including a position of Program Manager for the Papua New Guinea Education Capacity Building Program. 

Rob Randall, ACARA CEO, welcomed Janet’s appointment, "Janet will bring a wealth of expertise to the Curriculum team as ACARA moves forward in our goal to improve the learning outcomes for all young Australians. Janet has a deep understanding of curriculum design, and how that translates to implementation at the state and territory level, along with working productively with stakeholders to realise shared outcomes".

AC: Digital Technologies in the Top End

The Digital Technologies in focus (DTiF) curriculum officers continue to reach far and remote areas of Australia in their journey to aid teachers in implementing the Australian Curriculum: Digital Technologies in some of Australia’s most disadvantaged schools.

Curriculum Officer, Martin Levins, was recently in Gamardi, one of the Homeland schools of Maningrida College in Arnhem Land, Northern Territory. There are three Homeland schools involved in the DTiF project, and Gamardi services a school population of 2–15 students.

According to the Maningrida College website, how these schools operate depends on the season, accessibility by road, demands of ceremonies and funerals, which can have a huge impact on numbers, buildings and facilities, student numbers and local teacher availability. The general way of operating is for a teacher to visit a site 1–2 times a week, teaching and leaving work for a local teacher to continue with while they are not there. Teachers use a combination of day visits or overnight stays depending on the particular community.

Read more about the DTiF project.


National Report on Schooling: updated data available 

ACARA’s interactive resource, the National Report on Schooling data portal, has been updated with the most recently available data, including key performance measure data and data on schools and schooling:

  • school numbers, student numbers and staff numbers
  • student–teacher ratios
  • school funding
  • teacher education
  • Year 12 certification rates.



Janet Davy

Janet Davy