The Federal Government has called for feedback to inform the development of a new nationwide phonics assessment and numeracy check.
A questionnaire on the Department for Education and Training website is the next step in the staged implementation of the checks, announced by Minister for Education and Training Simon Birmingham in late January.
The assessments of Year 1 students’ literacy and numeracy skills aim to identify students who are behind so they can be targeted with interventions to prevent an achievement gap from widening. It follows three significant national and international reports in 2016 that revealed Australia’s education performance had plateaued or declined.
The questionnaire will inform an Expert Advisory Panel, consisting of principals, teachers, speech specialists, academics and researchers, which will report to the Education Council in mid-2017.
It asks respondents their opinions on the potential benefits of the checks, ways of maximising their effectiveness, the challenges associated with their introduction and the use of the information gained through the checks in the classroom.
The questionnaire is open until 17 March, 2017, and any persons interested have been asked to respond.