St. Kieran’s Primary Schoo Year 6 students Flynn Kaihara, 11, and Georgia Watterson, 11, are happy with their good NAPLAN results. Picture: Liam Kidston
St. Kieran’s Primary Schoo Year 6 students Flynn Kaihara, 11, and Georgia Watterson, 11, are happy with their good NAPLAN results. Picture: Liam Kidston

Small schools ace NAPLAN testing

A SMALL Catholic primary school in bayside Brighton and a state school in north Queensland with a high proportion of indigenous students are among the surprise schools making some of the biggest gains in NAPLAN tests.

The Australian Curriculum Assessment and Reporting Authority will today release details of Queensland schools that achieved significant improvements in their literacy and numeracy results in the national tests.

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Among the strong performers is St Kieran's School, Brighton, which posted improvements in the results of its Year 3-5 students in both reading and numeracy categories.

School principal Ben Gray said parental engagement was a key part of the school's success.

"The greatest impact occurs when parents are involved, the school offers targeted sessions for parents including reading workshops," he said.

White Rock State School on the southern fringes of Cairns - where half of its students come from the lowest socio-economic bracket, and 45 per cent of its students identify as indigenous - also posted notable gains in reading and numeracy scores.

Acting principal Mark Pullar said explicit teaching methods had led to big improvements.

"It's a research-validated, data-driven teaching method that produces significant gains in student outcomes," he said.

Meanwhile, the government-run My School website is being overhauled to make it more user-friendly, after a report found the site was likely being underused by parents trying to choose the right school for their child.

ACARA chief executive Robert Randall said the My School site was now mobile-friendly, easy to use and more engaging.

 

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