New School Success Model to lift outcomes

The School Success Model replaces the Local Schools, Local Decisions policy and will use targets to ensure shared responsibility for student success.

06 December 2020

New targets for NSW public schools announced today as part of the School Success Model will ensure that improving student outcomes sits at the heart of the NSW education system.

The School Success Model replaces the Local Schools, Local Decisions policy and will use targets to ensure shared responsibility for student success – from principals right through to senior executives at the Department of Education.

Minister for Education Sarah Mitchell said the success of every student is at the heart of what we do as an education system, and that responsibility needs to be shouldered by everyone.

“The School Success Model provides the transparency and support mechanisms for schools to successfully manage their record funding and make decisions that will benefit their students," Ms Mitchell said.

Schools will be given individual targets benchmarked against similar schools for HSC, student growth, phonics, attendance, NAPLAN, wellbeing, Aboriginal education, and pathways.

Schools that exceed their targets will provide a database of best practice – with the Department of Education to explore whether their teaching methods can be scaled across NSW.

Schools that fail to meet their targets will trigger intervention – with the department providing additional support. This will range from looking at whether teaching practices and learning programs reflect evidence-based best practice, to exploring whether a school’s unspent additional funding might be better used on providing extra staff in an area of educational need.

"Schools are receiving record funding, and many have used this funding to build truly incredible places to learn. These are the schools the system can learn from. These are the schools whose teaching practices can be scaled across similar schools who are not meeting their targets," Ms Mitchell said.

Ms Mitchell said that schools are diverse and complex places, and these targets will reflect that complexity.

"From 2021 we will begin collecting data on the different components of the School Success Model, allowing us to work with schools to have individual targets in place from 2022," Ms Mitchell said.

“While the department will be held accountable for ensuring that schools across NSW meet their targets, they will also have their own targets based around reducing the administrative burden for principals and teachers.

“The School Success Model will drive systemic improvement; it will champion our best schools and help those who are struggling. At its heart lies an understanding that principals, directors, executives and the Secretary have a responsibility to deliver the very best education to each NSW public school student.”

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