Smarter Schools National Partnerships
Under the Schools Assistance Act 2008, Independent Schools Victoria provide specialist advice and assistance to Victorian Independent schools to improve the educational outcomes for students through the Australian Government Smarter Schools National Partnerships program.
Under the new Australian Education Act, Australian Government Targeted Programs will be discontinued at the end of 2013, including the National Partnerships program.
Through the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) all States and Territories and the Commonwealth Government have agreed to work together on a set of National Partnerships in schooling that aim to improve the quality of Australian schooling and student outcomes. The Smarter Schools National Partnerships support the achievement of the COAG Schooling Outcomes and Targets.
COAG schooling outcomes
- All children are engaged in and benefiting from schooling
- Young people are meeting basic literacy and numeracy standards, and overall levels of literacy and numeracy achievements are improving
- Schooling promotes the social inclusion and reduces the education disadvantage of children, specifically Indigenous children
- Australian students excel by international standards
- Young people make a successful transition from school to work and further study.
COAG schooling targets
- Lift the Year 12 or equivalent attainment rate to 90 per cent by 2015
- Halve the gap for Indigenous students in reading, writing and numeracy within a decade
- At least halve the gap for Indigenous students in Year 12 or equivalent attainment rates by 2020.
- Reduce the number of students achieving below the nation’s minimum literacy and numeracy standards by 2015
- Improve the literacy and numeracy outcomes for all students by 2015.
The Smarter Schools National Partnerships focus on three key areas:
- Literacy and Numeracy
- Low Socioeconomic Status (SES) School Communities
- Improving Teacher Quality.
Literacy and Numeracy National Partnership
The Literacy and Numeracy National Partnership aims to improve student literacy and numeracy outcomes, particularly for students who are falling behind. In Victorian Independent schools, some of the initiatives that will support this partnership include:
- Building teacher and school leadership capacity through support from literacy and numeracy coaches/mentors and professional learning programs focusing on literacy and numeracy
- Advice for parents on how they can support their child’s literacy and numeracy development
- Improving the monitoring and use of literacy and numeracy performance information at student, classroom, school and regional levels to identify where support is needed
- Resources for schools to provide intensive literacy and/or numeracy intervention and support for students performing below the expected level.
Low Socioeconomic Status School Communities National Partnership
This National Partnership aims to address the diverse educational needs of students in low SES school communities and to support sustained improvement in their educational outcomes. In Victorian Independent schools, some of the initiatives that will support this partnership include:
- Strengthening the capacity of teachers to engage with the learning needs of specific student cohorts, including Indigenous and ESL students
- Enhancing school leadership capacity to drive school improvement in specific school and community contexts
- Strengthening the capacity of schools to monitor students and implement appropriate interventions for specific student cohorts
- School partnerships with community and support agencies to provide extra services to students and the school community including:
- homework clubs
- sport, music and other extra-curricular programs
- programs to build the capacity of parents to support their children’s learning.
Improving Teacher Quality National Partnership
This National Partnership seeks to support quality teaching and school leadership for all Victorian schools. In Victorian Independent schools, some of the initiatives that support this partnership include:
- Trialling and evaluating models of performance pay, both teacher-based and school-based, with a view to wider implementation such as Rewarding High Quality Teaching
- Developing leadership capabilities to empower principals to lead performance improvement in schools
- Data driven school outcomes
Journeys - Smarter Schools National Partnership Program Case Studies
Journeys is an uplifting collection of stories from Independent schools across Victoria that have been part of the Smarter Schools National Partnership (SSNP) program, which was designed to improve the quality of Australian schooling and student outcomes.
The 17 case studies can be viewed on our Sharing Practice page.
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