Review of Selective Education Access

The department conducted a review of the methods and processes used to identify and place gifted students in selective schools. Its findings inform an action plan to deliver a modern, world-class selection system for NSW.

Student journey of the selection process - illustration

The Review of Selective Education Access (PDF 1.2MB) is the result of rigorous research conducted by the department. It drew on independent expert review, quantitative data analysis, fieldwork in schools, stakeholder consultation, literature review of the latest scholarship, and comparative reviews of Australian and international practices.

The review found that NSW selective schools continue to offer valued choice for gifted students and their families, delivering excellence in academic achievement and student wellbeing as part of a comprehensive, equitable public education system. But it also found that the selection system needs modernisation if it is to be fit for purpose in the coming decades.

The review identified an action plan (PDF 135KB) to deliver a modern, world-class selection system for NSW. The action plan is designed to:

  • ensure that entry to selective schools is based on ability, not background
  • optimise the selection process to accurately identify students’ ability
  • address the gaps in today’s complex selection system.

Want more information?

Read the media release Fairer for everyone: Improving access to selective school options. Translations of the media release will be available soon.

For full details, download:


  • School operations

Business Unit:

  • Educational Standards
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