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NESA CEO's response to "Scared of NAPLAN' says it all"

6 April 2017
News story


Dr Carter (“Scared of NAPLAN' says it all”) and I agree that the ultimate purpose of ensuring all students have a minimum standard of literacy and numeracy is to provide a foundation for developing the higher-order critical thinking skills needed to write great works of literature, and solve the scientific problems of our time.

However, Dr Carter has employed the classic straw man approach to attack an argument NESA has not made.  If the HSC literacy and numeracy standard was a maximum standard, it would indeed promote a “reductive approach to education”. But it is a minimum standard. It is the least that students should be expected to achieve, and in no way constrains the most we can and should hope for them to achieve. Mozart learnt his scales before he wrote “The Magic Flute”.
The Year 9 NAPLAN tests provide teachers and parents with an early opportunity to identify students who may need support to reach the minimum standard by Year 12, as well as students with the first opportunity to demonstrate they have achieved the minimum standard.
To concerned students and parents - NAPLAN results are a diagnostic tool. Band 8s in Year 9 are not expected, and students have three more years of learning and opportunities to meet the standard by Year 12, and even more opportunities after that.
And when you achieve the minimum standard, you can be assured that the world and all its possibilities are open to you.
David de Carvalho
NSW Education Standards Authority CEO

Read NESA CEO opinion piece, “Busting some of the HSC literacy and numeracy myths”

View further information about the HSC minimum standard


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