‘The Australian Curriculum sets the expectations for what all Australian students should be taught, regardless of where they live or their background. For F-10, it means that students now have access to the same content, and their achievement can be judged against consistent national standards.’
This statement appears on the Home page of the Australian Curriculum website and may be viewed here.
There is a special section for parents from which you may download an ‘Overview of the Australian Curriculum’ and ‘Information Sheets’ for each year level, Foundation – Year10, showing what your child will typically learn in each of the specified eight learning areas. I recommend you download the ‘Overview . . . ’ and the Information Sheets that apply to your students’ year levels. Click here.
These information sheets refer to the ‘Content descriptors’ of the Australian Curriculum but do not explain how teachers assess students’ performance using a 5-point scale, usually A-E, against the achievement standards. Assessment in Queensland is overseen by the Queensland Curriculum Assessment Authority, State, Catholic and Independent Schools.
Assessment Against The Achievement Standards
To award a grade of A-E on a student’s item of assessment, a teacher will generally use a rubric in the form of a table which lists the skills being assessed down the left side and the levels A-E across the top. Descriptions for five levels of achievement for each skill are set out in rows to the right of the skill. High School students are generally given a copy of the rubric along with a Task Description sheet which tells them what they are expected to do to complete the assessment item.
Most students are likely to score a C on an assessment task which is the teacher’s expectation when students are working at their year level and have competently completed the task.
Students who are motivated to perform beyond expectation need to take careful note of the skill descriptors in the A and B columns of the rubric and work to accomplish these. A and B descriptors generally require that the student has not only mastered the skill being assessed but can apply the skill in new situations or in innovative ways.
Students who score D or E on an assessment task need help as they have either not understood what the task required or they have not yet mastered the skill being assessed. Contact the class or subject teacher when you have any concerns about your child’s assessment results. It may be that your child would benefit from private tutoring if this is not already happening. The aim at You and Me Tutoring is to give students the support they need to build skills and confidence in themselves so that they can attain their potential, and in many cases, demonstrate ‘performance beyond expectation’.