We recognise that it is essential that all our students reach their potential in terms of literacy and numeracy. The central role these skills play in underpinning all educational achievement is recognised by the Department of Education and Training (DET) which measures student attainment in these areas through the National Assessment Program – Literacy and Numeracy (NAPLAN) tests at Year 7 and Year 9. We aim to ensure that our students are achieving well above the expected levels in these areas and approach this in four ways: Depth of curriculum, Literacy and numeracy “across the curriculum”, English as an Additional Language classes, and our Corrective Reading Program.
Depth of curriculum

We offer students learning opportunities that require them to use language to analyse, criticise and synthesise thus deepening their vocabulary and finessing the way they use language to communicate.

Literacy and numeracy “across the curriculum”

All teachers are required to teach any of the literacy and numeracy skills that may be required in a Unit of work before they commence. This is particularly important for students who are recent arrivals in Australia and, although not illiterate in their home language, are still learning English. We also offer students alternative assessment, such as reading aloud questions and having answers transcribed if the literacy skills themselves are not part of the assessment.

English as an Additional Language (EAL) classes

Students in Years 7–10 who are recent arrivals in Australia undertake EAL classes as an alternative to studying a Language Other Than English (LOTE). In VCE, these students study EAL as an alternative to English.

Any student wishing to pursue study of their first language as an academic study is encouraged to do so at the Victorian School of Languages which operates within Blackburn High School on Saturday mornings.

Corrective Reading Program

All students entering at Year 7 are assessed for their literacy standard. Those who fall below the minimum benchmarks can be given additional assistance through the intensive Corrective Reading Program. We encourage parents’ involvement so they can continue to help once the student has finished the course.