The challenge of tracking

Australia has a new National Curriculum, this year we are supposed to be reporting about student achievement in this curriculum. This means that teachers need to be able to determine which of the parts of the curriculum students understand and can use. In a standard single teacher class teachers can prepare activities that assess understanding and then report on the outcomes. A team teaching project based situation like we use in our academy of innovative learning makes things a little more complex. Since more than one teacher may be helping a student on their maths for example, a system is needed that allows up to 10 different teachers to record student achievements. An ability to update the records while working with students would also be good.

The above was written in January as we prepared to teach in the integrated way for the third time. Over this last term I have tried to find the best way to track this progress. My school has found a web based solution that enables us to track against the Maths outcomes, but it is not a perfect option. While marking a particular task sheet it took about 3 minutes per student to note the two outcomes that were addressed. This may not seem much, but I marked over 30 papers. ACARA the publishers of the new curriculum are the national Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting agency. I hope that we will see this reporting aspect be developed soon, unlike the Accountability aspect of the South Australian SACSAF that I never saw in my 7 years of officially using the framework. A simple national recording and reporting system for our national curriculum, perhaps even one where we can inform students and parents which outcomes have been met.

This is something I look forward to, if you hear of any developments please let me know.

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