Clarkson Community High School among top 50 WA schools for improvement in literacy and numeracy performance

Former students Joseph Solomon and Amanda Booth. Picture: Martin Kennealey d469920
Former students Joseph Solomon and Amanda Booth. Picture: Martin Kennealey d469920

CLARKSON Community High School’s latest graduates improved their literacy and numeracy performance by almost 66 per cent in four years.

The school received a letter from the School Curriculum and Standards Authority recently congratulating it on being among the top 50 WA schools for improvement.

A 2013 Online Literacy and Numeracy Assessment found 28.1 per cent of Year 9 students had shown proficiency in reading, writing and numeracy.

By the end of 2016, the same cohort had 93.85 per cent of students, including Joseph Solomon and Amanda Booth, achieving the required standard.

It meant the year group’s literacy and numeracy proficiency grew 65.75 per cent, although principal John Young said the results did not mean all those students achieved WA Certificate of Education in 2016.

“It recognises the percentage increase of our kids demonstrating the minimum standards from Year 9 NAPLAN to the completion of Year 12,” he said.

Head of mathematics and science and Year 9 co-ordinator Adam Inder said the results showed the school was accelerating improvement for students.

“This achievement is a testament to the positive strategies we are putting in place, such as strategies based on William Purkey’s Invitational Learning Theory and John Hattie’s Visible Learning,” he said.

Adam Inder.

The former Peter Moyes Anglican Community School student said having grown up in the area he was aware of the stigma the Clarkson school had.

“It’s good for the community to see that Clarkson is pitching above its weight,” he said.

Mr Inder had originally planned to pursue a career in chemical engineering, but after graduating from UWA in 2013 he secured a place in the Teach for Australia program in 2015 – one of the successful 67 candidates from 1300 applicants.

The program included a two-year placement at a socioeconomically disadvantaged school – his was Balga Senior High School – while doing a two-year, full-time masters in teaching.

The 23-year-old joined Clarkson CHS as the department head at the start of 2017.

“This is a school which many of my friends growing up attended, so I knew a lot about the local context and came in passionate to make a positive change in my local area,” he said.

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