SSTUWA withdraws support for online NAPLAN

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SSTUWA members are aware that earlier this year, Minister for Education Sue Ellery determined that Western Australian schools would not participate in NAPLAN Online due to ongoing technical concerns.

The SSTUWA Executive has now formally endorsed the position taken at the most recent meeting of the AEU Federal Executive to withdraw support for the introduction of NAPLAN Online and to lobby federal, state and territory ministers to end its development and use. The AEU has communicated with all state and territory ministers outlining its position and the reasons for it.

These concerns include:

  • The appropriateness of online NAPLAN testing for younger students.
  • Equity issues for schools and students.
  • The inability of teachers to see the entire range of questions answered by each student; and the general nature of reports which will mean teachers will be unable to use the test results for diagnostic purposes;
  • The further pressure on teachers to conduct NAPLAN preparation programs addressing student ICT skills for the specific purpose of undertaking online testing.
  • Disruption to schools during a testing period undertaken over two weeks.
  • Insufficient/inadequate ICT hardware and bandwidth.

The SSTUWA is aware that these concerns are shared across all sectors of education in WA.

We are also concerned about a lack of transparency regarding the involvement of commercial interests and so-called edu-businesses in the development and delivery of NAPLAN Online and associated products.