The Best Start Kindergarten assessment helps teachers identify the literacy and numeracy skills of each student at the beginning of Kindergarten.
The assessment helps teachers develop effective learning programs to build upon what students currently know.
Each child's achievement and progress in class is assessed by their teacher(s). Teachers use a variety of ways to assess their students including observing their work in class and looking closely at the work they produce. They make assessments of their students' progress throughout the year.
Teachers will also make judgements twice a year of each student's achievement compared with the expectations described in each key learning area (KLA) syllabus. In Years 1-6, their judgements are made on a 5 point achievement scale, using A-E or the word descriptors; Outstanding, High, Sound, Limited and Basic. Schools have the option to use either A-E or these words.
The written report to each child's parents provided by each school twice a year, will also include a written comment with strengths and areas for improvement for all KLAs. Kindergarten students' progress will be reported through the descriptions provided by teachers in their comments.
The policy in public schools for Curriculum planning and programming, assessing and reporting to parents, K-12 is on the DET policies website.
The expectations for each learning stage (Early stage 1, Stage 1, Stage 2 and Stage 3) are summarised in the NSW Board of Studies Foundations Statements. The Board of Studies provides information about assessing and reporting student achievement in each KLA against the common A-E scale through the Assessment Resource Centre.
Reporting software is available for schools whose testing authority is the NSW Department of Education and Communities through the School Measurement and Reporting Toolkit (SMART).