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Assessment and Reporting

At St James Catholic College, achievement levels of students (A-E grades) are determined by the quality of each student’s demonstrated learning outcomes measured against the Australian Curriculum achievement standards for each subject area.

The Australian Curriculum document states:

(Available online at http://www.australiancurriculum.edu.au/overview/implications-for-teaching-assessing-and-reporting)

“The Australian Curriculum achievement standards are an important focus for teachers in initial planning and programming of teaching and learning activities. They provide teachers with a statement of learning expected of students at the end of a year or band of years, and assist in developing teaching and learning programs.

Teachers use the Australian Curriculum achievement standards and content to identify current levels of learning and achievement, and then to select the most appropriate content (possibly from across several year levels) to teach individual students and/or groups of students. Teachers develop teaching programs designed to build on current learning. In each class, there may be students with a range of prior achievement (below, at or above the year level expectations)".

Teachers also use the achievement standards at the end of a period of teaching, to make on-balance judgments about the quality of learning demonstrated by students – that is, whether the students have achieved below, at or above the standard. To make judgments, teachers draw on assessment data they have collected as evidence during the course of the teaching period.

If an individual student’s achievement is below the expected standard, this suggests that the teaching programs and practice should be reviewed to better assist the student in their learning in the future. It also suggests that additional support and teaching that targets the student’s specific needs is necessary to ensure that the student does not fall behind.

Assessment of student learning takes place at different levels and for different purposes, including:

    • ongoing formative assessment within classrooms for the purposes of monitoring learning and providing feedback, for teachers to inform their teaching, and for students to inform their learning
    • summative assessment for the purposes of twice-yearly reporting by schools to parents and carers on the progress and achievement of students
    • annual testing of Years 3, 5, 7 and 9 students’ levels of achievement in aspects of literacy and numeracy, conducted as a part of the National Assessment Program – Literacy and Numeracy (NAPLAN)
    • periodic sample testing of specific learning areas within the Australian Curriculum as a part of the National Assessment Program (NAP).

To help ensure the validity of each student’s assessment a process of Moderation is used that is linked to the Australian Curriculum Achievement Standards for each Subject.  Moderation processes include:

    • Internal Moderation between St James Catholic College teachers in Subject/Year Team meetings throughout the year
    • External Moderation between St James Catholic College teachers with other systemic school colleagues at TCEO Cluster and Network meetings

In short, this process provides formal opportunities for teachers to compare samples of their students’ work with colleagues across Tasmania to help ensure accuracy and fairness of each individual student’s achievement.