Saint Mary’s Catholic College Kingaroy NAPLAN success attributed to student focus and BCE learning tool


​Saint Mary's Catholic College Prep Teacher Mrs Emma Brown, Principal Carmel O'Brien, & Secondary Learning Leader Jessica Welch with prep, year 1, 3, & 4 students. 

​Students and teachers at Saint Mary's Catholic College Kingaroy are celebrating this week after being labelled as one of the standout achievers in the recent NAPLAN results. ​

The Brisbane Catholic Education (BCE) school scored second place overall in the 2021 NAPLAN test, achieved the top score for the Year 7 average, were named among the most improved Catholic schools in the state, and achieved a 68 per cent above average progress score in the Year 7 to 9 reading metric. 

Saint Mary's Catholic College Principal Carmel O'Brien said purposeful teaching, returning to basics, and test readiness was behind the outstanding NAPLAN results. 

"All students are really engaged and focused here, and we'll often talk to our students about their job as learners," Principal O'Brien said. 

“Our job as teachers is to teach, and their job as learners is to learn, and together we succeed. 

“Part of our success is also due to the BCE writing analysis tool, which enables our teachers across all curriculum areas to champion the growth and development of literacy, decoding and numeracy, ensuring students are improving in all subject areas.  

“Every teacher is pivotal in teaching literacy skills through all teaching domains, including the technologies, sciences, mathematics and the humanities subjects, it is very much a whole school collaborative." 

Basic principles such as phonetic learning, phonological awareness, and looking at root words was also attributed to Saint Mary's Catholic College's success. 

The school's Literacy Coach and Prep Teacher Mrs Emma Brown said the BCE writing analysis tool enables students to visualise their progress across the school year. 

“It allows our school to collect a writing sample from our students which is then assessed against eight aspects, and cross marked by a variety of teachers," Mrs Brown said.  

“Each individual student's writing analysis will look different, so the tool gives specific feedback and information about literacy skills and how they can improve, shows targeted feedback data on their work, maps their progress, and provides meaningful and visual feedback on how far they've come across the school year." 

Saint Mary's Catholic College Secondary Learning Leader Jessica Welch said every subject was included in the NAPLAN preparation.  

“Each term we made a very concerted effort to ensure that students were prepared over a variety of different subjects by doing short activities like five minutes of reading at the beginning of each lesson or a comprehension task once a week," Mrs Welch said. 

“We also did decoding lessons with students, where we would actually break down the question and discuss what the question was actually asking us. 

“I'm so proud of the students and their results, they all worked incredibly hard to achieve this amazing result." 

Saint Mary's Catholic College Kingaroy has opportunities available for secondary teachers across English, Humanities, Science and Maths, as well as a Middle Leader. 

If you'd like to join this dedicated teaching cohort you can apply here. 

For more information about Saint Mary's Catholic College and to enrol click here. 

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