Same Words, Different Story: unpacking nine years of NAPLAN data for very remote Australia

Guenther, John (2017) Same Words, Different Story: unpacking nine years of NAPLAN data for very remote Australia. In: AIATSIS National Indigenous Research Conference, 23 march 2017, Canberra.

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The latest national results for the National Assessment Program—Literacy and Numeracy (NAPLAN) were released in December 2016 amid gloomy international comparisons and media messages that nothing has changed. Each year the story is more or less the same. Among the pessimistic reports and analyses, the failures of remote schooling are lamented even more. Teachers are blamed, parents are accused of not being interested in their children’s education and the tests themselves are blamed for their inappropriateness for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children. There is however, a different story. The story I tell in this paper uses NAPLAN data from the nine reports released since 2008. It shows that for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students from very remote Australia, overall trends are positive. My analysis shows, based on trends across all NAPLAN test domains, that the proportion of students from very remote Northern Territory achieving the national minimum standard has increased by 20 per cent since 2008. Nationally, the trend is similar, with an increase of 16 per cent. The paper argues against a short term, year by year review of NAPLAN results, instead suggesting a long term view of change, with less of a concern about ‘gaps’ between non-Indigenous and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander academic performance and more of a concern about change over time.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Field of Research (2008): 13 Education > 1301 Education Systems > 130199 Education systems not elsewhere classified
13 Education > 1303 Specialist Studies in Education > 130301 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Education
13 Education > 1399 Other Education > 139999 Education not elsewhere classified
Subjects: L Education > L Education (General)
Research Collaboration Area: Education
Date Deposited: 21 May 2018 01:55
Last Modified: 12 Jul 2022 03:20

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