PROGRESS: St Joseph's Year 9 students Charlotte Widderick, Cooper Wren and Gianna Newman with principal Andrew Kendall.
PROGRESS: St Joseph's Year 9 students Charlotte Widderick, Cooper Wren and Gianna Newman with principal Andrew Kendall. Matthew Purcell

Continued growth the key to NAPLAN successes

MARKED progression is a tell-tale sign something is being done right and Stanthorpe's St Joseph's is achieving more than most.

The school has been ranked 13th in all of Queensland in terms of its NAPLAN testing progress from Years 7 to 9.

The tests are sat by Years 3, 5, 7 and 9, with data comparisons showing the level of headway being made in schools.

The Year 7s and 9s ranked 97 of 408 schools but St Joseph's principal Andrew Kendall said he was more concerned with seeing advancement.

"In terms of improvement, which is a better indicator I think, particularly in terms of where the school's going and our teaching, they came 13th so it's a pretty big effort, I feel,” Mr Kendall said.

"If you look at the Toowoomba region and even more locally, we're way, way out in front in terms of success.

"The only schools that were closest were the big Toowoomba schools.”

Mr Kendall says the school had implemented specialised programs to help achieve growth.

"A big one is the Visible Learning Program where you focus on those teaching strategies and practices that lead to growth,” he said.

"Another key to success is encouraging your students to support each other because peer support is a big factor in success.”

Individualised programs for each student was also paying dividends according to Year 9 student Cooper Wren.

"I think the results are a good indication of where the school is going, the teachers and quality of staff,” he said.

Mr Kendall said: "The great thing about the success these students have had in the middle years of secondary is now they're set up really well to go through to grade 12 and have continued success.”

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