Indicative Progress templates

The Victorian Curriculum F–10 Unit has released new Indicative Progress templates. An important aspect of curriculum planning is being able to articulate what student progress looks like, using the achievement standards in the curriculum continuum.

Developing Indicative Progress descriptions during the planning phase will assist teachers to explain the learning expectations to students, and assess and report student achievement. Indicative Progress templates can be found on each curriculum-area advice page.

Indicative Progress template examples are being developed to illustrate to teachers and curriculum leaders possible progress scenarios linked to specific contexts. These examples will be released progressively throughout Terms 1 and 2.

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AusVELS archived

As the new Victorian Curriculum F–10 is being implemented this year, the previous AusVELS Curriculum and AusVELS Resources and Support pages are only available from the Previous curricula webpage.

Language teachers should refer to the VCAA resources page or the Victorian Curriculum website for clarification about using the Victorian Curriculum F–10.

For any curriculum queries, contact the F–10 Curriculum Unit:

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Online professional learning sessions in 2017

A new series of online professional development sessions is commencing in Term 1 to support teachers in the delivery of the Victorian Curriculum F–10. Starting in February there will be some overview sessions addressing your frequently asked questions and then curriculum-area specific sessions continue in March.

These are new sessions that will build on those offered during 2016, and are also appropriate for teachers who haven't attended previous sessions. To view the schedule of sessions and register to attend, go to the professional learning webpage.

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Cross-curriculum priorities

Learning about the cross-curriculum priorities of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories and cultures, Asia and Australia's engagement with Asia, and Sustainability is embedded in the curriculum areas of the Victorian Curriculum F–10. These priorities provide national, regional and global dimensions and give students the knowledge and skills to engage with and better understand their world.

The Learning about Sustainability mapping document is now available on the Victorian Curriculum F–10 website. There will also be professional learning sessions offered during Term 1 with a focus on sustainability. Details will be available in the March VCAA Bulletin.

Links in the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Histories and Cultures mapping document have also been updated to reflect updates in the Victorian Curriculum F–10, specifically the release of the Victorian Aboriginal Language curriculum in November 2016.

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NAPLAN 2017 test dates

Schools are reminded that NAPLAN pencil-and-paper testing will take place from Tuesday 9 May to Thursday 11 May 2017. Schools participating in the pilot NAPLAN Online program will have a slightly extended period in which to complete the tests, and details will be forwarded separately.

The tests must be administered in the order, on the dates and within the times specified in the timetables provided in the NAPLAN 2017 Handbook for Principals. Under no circumstances may a test be conducted before the official test date or time. Please note that the test security period has been extended by one week and all tests must remain secure until Friday 26 May 2017.

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NAPLAN 2017 Principals package

The NAPLAN 2017 Principals packages are being sent to schools in early Term 1, 2017. If you do not receive the Principals package, please contact the NAPLAN Helpdesk: 1800 684 637.

The package includes the NAPLAN 2017 Handbook for Principals. Part A of the handbook contains the National Protocols for Test Administration (the Protocols) and provides detailed information on all aspects of the administration of the tests. In addition, to ensure that the tests are administered fairly to all students, a NAPLAN Code of Conduct, providing a summary of acceptable and unacceptable behaviours by principals and test administrators, is also included in this section. Principals should ensure that all staff members involved in NAPLAN have read the Protocols carefully.

Part B of the handbook provides information specifically related to implementing the NAPLAN 2017 in Victoria.

To ensure that all Australian students complete the tests under similar conditions, principals should make sure that all relevant personnel have read and understood both sections of the handbook and that, where applicable, a copy is also provided to the NAPLAN coordinator.

The NAPLAN 2017 Principals package also includes an important reminders sheet for NAPLAN 2017 and the Test Administration website login details.

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Requests to vary NAPLAN 2017 test dates

NAPLAN tests (other than catch-up tests) must be administered in the order, on the dates, and within the times specified in the timetables provided.

Schools with compelling reasons that are outside their control (for example, where a local public holiday occurs during the testing period) may request permission to participate in the tests in the week after testing to Friday 19 May 2017. This option is only available for classes or groups of students, and not for individual students. As previously advised, schools that book a camp in test week will not be granted approval to vary their NAPLAN test dates.

Under no circumstances may any NAPLAN test be conducted prior to the published test date.

Request to Vary Dates forms can be found in the NAPLAN 2017 Handbook for Principals and completed forms must be returned to the VCAA by Friday 24 February 2017.

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Year 7 and Year 9 Numeracy tests

In 2017, following a revision to the format of the NAPLAN Numeracy tests by the Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA), the Year 7 and Year 9 NAPLAN Numeracy tests will each contain a total of only 48 questions. Students will be required, as in the past, to answer both calculator and non-calculator questions that allow them to apply a broad range of numeracy skills.

The Year 3 and Year 5 paper-based tests will be similar in style and content to previous years.

As the Year 7 and Year 9 Numeracy tests will have fewer questions, students will sit one Numeracy test session instead of two. This one test session will still be split into two sections: Part A, which requires calculators, and Part B, in which students are not permitted to have calculators.

Parts A and B of the new Numeracy test will continue to be presented in a flip test book.

  • Part A (40 questions) will have the calculator component. It will make up the majority of the test questions and will cover all curriculum areas. Students will have 50 minutes to complete Part A.
  • Part B (eight questions) will have the non-calculator component, and will primarily contain questions requiring number calculations. Students will have 10 minutes to complete Part B.

While the non-calculator section of the test will be shorter, the number of questions across the entire test that require mental calculation will not change. Detailed instructions on how to administer this test session will be printed in the NAPLAN 2017 Test Administration Handbook for Teachers.

As in previous years, calculators used for the calculator-allowed section of the Numeracy test must not be multifunction or internet-accessible devices. ACARA has confirmed that tablets (including iPads) and similar devices fall into this category and their use is not permitted.

Schools must ensure that all Year 7 and Year 9 students have access to, and are familiar with, a suitable calculator for the NAPLAN Numeracy tests in May 2017.

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NAPLAN 2017 Writing test information

ACARA and all NAPLAN Test Administration Authorities have agreed that, as in 2016, there will be two Writing test prompts: one prompt for Years 3 and 5; and a different prompt for Years 7 and 9. This decision has been taken to ensure continued maximum engagement and fairness for students nationally.

The genre for the NAPLAN 2017 Writing test will be either narrative or persuasive, and it will be the same genre for all year levels. Also, as in 2016, the genre for the Writing test will not be disclosed prior to the test day and students will not be able to choose the genre in which they write their response.

Further information on the Writing test is available on the VCAA website.

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From 2017, NAPLAN will transition from a paper-based to an online assessment. As part of the transition in Victoria, the NAPLAN Online Pilot will be conducted in 2017, with participating schools administering the NAPLAN tests online in place of the pen-and-paper tests. Schools participating in the NAPLAN Online Pilot in 2017 will receive further advice via direct communications from the VCAA regarding training and preparation for the tests.

All other schools will receive advice later in Term 1 regarding the transition to NAPLAN Online and associated readiness activities. For general information for about NAPLAN Online, please see the NAPLAN webpages

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NAPLAN Test Administration website

The VCAA provides schools with the NAPLAN Test Administration website to enable a range of administrative tasks to be completed online.

The website is currently available for the enrolment phase. During this phase all schools are asked to complete the following tasks by Friday 24 February 2017:

  • submitting a Statement of Compliance
  • registering authorised staff
  • reviewing school contact and address details
  • ordering alternative format test books (i.e. large print, black and white, braille and electronic).

Please note that independent schools are also required to pre-enrol students by uploading data to the website. This is to be completed by Friday 17 February 2017.

The NAPLAN Test Administration website is a secure website that requires a user ID and password to log in. The login details are provided to principals in the letter accompanying the NAPLAN 2017 Principals package.

Detailed instructions to assist schools with completing tasks during the enrolment phase are available on the VCAA's NAPLAN webpages.

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Student registration for NAPLAN 2017

Students undertaking the NAPLAN 2017 tests will be registered via an enrolment process prior to the tests. This allows individual student details to be printed on test books and provides significant efficiencies in the administration of the tests at the school level and in the processing of test results. As in previous years, the following enrolment processes apply for Year 3, 5, 7 and 9 students.

Government schools

Through an agreement between the Department of Education and Training (DET) and the VCAA, all students at government schools will be pre-enrolled in the NAPLAN tests based on their enrolment status on the CASES21 system, as of the February 2017 school census day. This means that government schools do not have to manually upload their enrolment data.

Catholic schools

The Catholic Education Office Melbourne will collect and provide student registration information to the VCAA on behalf of all Catholic schools, as part of their February 2017 school census process.

Independent schools

Independent schools are required to upload data files directly to the VCAA using the NAPLAN Test Administration website. This process must be completed by Friday 17 February 2017.

Further details regarding student registration and pre-enrolment processes will be provided by letter early in Term 1, 2017.

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Ordering alternative test formats

All NAPLAN test materials will be available in large print and braille formats. In addition, A4-size black-and-white materials are also available. Requests for the interactive PDF, large print, black-and-white or braille materials need to be ordered online through the NAPLAN Test Administration website. These are the formats available in large print:

  • N18A – A4-size paper, approximately three questions displayed per page
  • N18 – A3-size paper, questions displayed as per standard book
  • N24A – A4-size paper, approximately two questions displayed per page
  • N24 – A3-size paper, two questions per page
  • N36 – A3-size paper, one question per page.

The format available for braille is unified English braille code (UEB). This can either be requested in Grade 1 uncontracted or Grade 2 contracted, single or double spacing.

An interactive PDF version of the tests is also available. This electronic format enables students to answer questions on screen and may be appropriate for students who have a disability and use a computer as part of their usual adjustments when participating in classroom assessments, and are not able to otherwise access the tests through any of the other adjustments for disability.

Requests for alternative test formats must be submitted via the NAPLAN Test Administration website by Friday 24 February 2017.

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Student exemption and withdrawal forms

Personalised forms for recording student exemptions and withdrawals will be available for printing via the NAPLAN Test Administration website from mid-April, after student enrolment is completed. Further information regarding completion of these forms will be supplied in April.

Principals are reminded that the final decision regarding student exemption or withdrawal from the NAPLAN rests with parents or carers. Under no circumstances should a student be exempted or withdrawn from the NAPLAN without the signed approval of their parent or carer prior to the commencement of the tests.

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Requesting permission to use a scribe or assistive technology

Permission for eligible students to use a scribe in the Writing test, or to use assistive technology, must be sought and approved by the VCAA prior to the NAPLAN tests.

Please note that all applications for the use of a scribe or assistive technology need to be completed via the NAPLAN Test Administration website. The website will be available for this purpose from mid-April, and applications must be lodged by Tuesday 2 May 2017. Further information is provided in the NAPLAN 2017 Handbook for Principals.

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On Demand Testing

Upgrade for the Victorian Curriculum F–10

The On Demand item bank has been updated to support the new Victorian Curriculum F–10 from 2017. The latest version of On Demand (Build 98) contains the updated item bank and realigned tests and is scheduled for release to schools in Term 1, 2017. This new upgrade will not impact functionality of the On Demand application and students' test data will remain available from the previous version.

It is strongly recommended that schools upgrade On Demand to Build 98 prior to commencing testing in 2017. Please note that any school not on Build 97 will need to update to Build 97 prior to upgrading to Build 98. Schools will be required to download the realigned On Demand Tests after the update has been run.

As part of this update, the Mathematics range of tests has been expanded to include 30-item tests for Statistics and Probability covering Year Levels 3 to 10. Professional development sessions will be conducted to provide teachers support for the new test designs and interpreting On Demand reports. Further details will be published on the VCAA website in Term 1, 2017.

For registration and other queries contact the On Demand Helpdesk: 1800 827 721 or See the On Demand Testing webpages for further information and support documentation.