RE­GIONS CHALK UP A WIN 5 NAPLAN stars fall in lat­est rank­ings

The Sunday Mail (Queensland) - - REGIONS CHALK UP A WIN - LAU­REN MARTYN-JONES

SOME of the peren­nial stars of the NAPLAN tests are ac­tu­ally not gen­er­at­ing the gains in stu­dent achieve­ment that less af­flu­ent schools have cre­ated.

A de­tailed anal­y­sis by The Sun­day Mail has ex­am­ined whether schools have been able to take pri­mary school stu­dents in Year 3 in 2016 and high school stu­dents in Year 7 in 2016 and im­prove their per­for­mance against the state mean two years later when they are in Year 5 and Year 9.

The in­ves­ti­ga­tion shows many schools con­sis­tently praised for the best scores in NAPLAN test­ing did not see an over­all im­prove­ment or in some cases saw a de­cline in the per­for­mance of those stu­dents.

Year 5 stu­dents at Ash­grove State School, which is among Queens­land’s best NAPLAN schools and is nes­tled in a pricey and com­pet­i­tive school catch­ment zone, scored 25 fewer NAPLAN points on av­er­age per sub­ject against the state mean com­pared to how that year group per­formed in 2016.

Sim­i­larly, Year 5 stu­dents at Wishart State School, which is ranked 12th among Queens­land pri­mary schools on NAPLAN per­for­mance, saw a drop by an av­er­age of 15 points per sub­ject com­pared to 2016.

At Kelvin Grove State Col­lege, which is un­der sig­nif­i­cant en­rol­ment pres­sure due to its strong aca­demic per­for­mance, this year’s Year 5 stu­dents did not per­form as well against the state mean as they did in 2016.

The re­sults also re­veal some of Queens­land’s most ex­pen­sive pri­vate schools recorded sim­i­lar slides in per­for­mance.

For many of th­ese pri­vate schools, the neg­a­tive tra­jec­tory can be put down to large in­takes of new stu­dents in Year 5.

Year 5s at Bris­bane Boys’ Col­lege in Toowong, where par­ents pay $19,986 in fees, did not do as well this year against the state mean as Year 3 stu­dents did in 2016 by an av­er­age of 36 points per sub­ject.

St Ai­dan’s Angli­can Girls School, which charges $17,689 for Year 5 and scored the sec­ond best over­all test marks in the state, also de­clined rel­a­tive to its per­for­mance in 2016.

Year 5 re­sults at Toowoomba Gram­mar School, Fairholme Col­lege and More­ton Bay Boys’ Col­lege also slid rel­a­tive to their Year 3 re­sults in 2016.

More­ton Bay Boys’ Col­lege ex­ec­u­tive prin­ci­pal James Slo­man said the school had an en­rol­ment in­take in Year 5.

“The chal­lenge has been en­deav­our­ing to pre­pare newly en­rolled stu­dents who we have been with us for only 13 weeks to sit the NAPLAN test,” he said. “You will no­tice this trend in other schools that have sim­i­lar en­rol­ment prac­tices, es­pe­cially schools like ours that do not have any form of se­lec­tive en­try en­rol­ment prac­tices.”

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