New lit­er­acy check on way

Townsville Bulletin - - NATION -

YEAR 1 stu­dents will un­dergo a “check” of their lit­er­acy and nu­mer­acy skills un­der a new na­tional as­sess­ment.

The check would be rolled out for Year 1 chil­dren na­tion­wide to iden­tify those who are be­hind, and fo­cus on phonic knowl­edge and num­ber sense and po­si­tion. While the check has not yet been de­vel­oped, it would be­come part of the Na­tional As­sess­ment Pro­gram as early as 2019.

Ed­u­ca­tion Min­is­ter Si­mon Birm­ing­ham said Aus­tralian re­sults had stag­nated and even de­clined de­spite the “ex­cel­lent ed­u­ca­tion sys­tem”.

A six- per­son ex­pert panel in­clud­ing re­search fel­lows, pro­fes­sors and teach­ers ad­vised Mr Birm­ing­ham, find­ing the need for a “light touch” check as there was no sys­tem­atic early learn­ing as­sess­ment of es­sen­tial skills. Un­der the panel’s rec­om­men­da­tions, the new tool would be de­vel­oped for the nu­mer­acy check while a UK phon­ics check would be adapted for Aus­tralian use.

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