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Australian Curriculum

Independent Schools Queensland (ISQ) is committed to supporting teachers and school leaders with up-to-date information, resources and specialist services to assist with the implementation of the Australian Curriculum from Prep to Year 10.

The Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA) is responsible for the development of:

  • a national curriculum
  • a national assessment program
  • a national data collection and reporting program that supports 21st century learning for all Australian students.

In Queensland, independent schools are expected to plan, teach, assess and report directly on the achievement standards from the Australian Curriculum for Prep to Year 10.  In Years 11 and 12, independent schools must implement the Queensland Curriculum and Assessment Authority (QCAA) senior syllabuses or other QCAA approved pathways, studies or recognised frameworks.

In the first instance, independent schools in Queensland should always go to ACARA’s Australian Curriculum website to access the most up to date version of the Australian Curriculum. Independent schools are also encouraged to regularly visit the ACARA website to find out the latest developments in ACARA's work.

Independent schools wishing to determine time allocations for subjects in Years 7 to 10 are advised that the original times provided by ACARA in the Curriculum Design Paper (page 9) are considered a useful guide. QCAA has provided specific advice about core subjects and time allocations for subjects in Prep to Year 6 in their Core P-10 Australian Curriculum report to the Minister for Education.

School and curriculum leaders are encouraged to consider the information contained here when making decisions about reporting to parents. 

ISQ supports member schools curriculum and assessment compliance and accountability. ISQ provides a fee-for-service curriculum audit process that may assist member schools with strategic discussions about curriculum.

Progression points

ISQ has developed progression points in English, mathematics and digital technologies. The progression points may assist teachers to identify, track and report on student progress, as well as informing the planning of teaching programs to meet the needs of individuals and groups of students in these learning areas/subjects.

Semester 2, 2019 Curriculum Leader Workshop

Curriculum innovation

In November 2016, ISQ released a paper on Leading Curriculum Innovation to provide provocation for school leaders to consider how they could better prepare young people for both a globalised world of work and to be ethically responsible citizens of the planet. This paper suggests schools could:

  • more actively develop the general capabilities of the Australian Curriculum (or a similar set of 21st century skills)
  • encourage more open and active inquiry learning
  • provide more opportunities for student voice, student agency and student engagement.

A number of independent schools took that ‘challenge’ and decided to embark on curriculum renewal and innovation in one of these areas. In 2016, ISQ developed two projects to support schools that were interested in:

  • development of, and assessment of, general capabilities
  • deep inquiry in primary classrooms.

ISQ’s Our Schools Our Future paper expands on some of these themes. Further developments include:

  • continuation of the two projects on inquiry and assessment of curriculum innovation.
  • hosting of a two-day event to support further thinking on these themes. The first event held on Tuesday, 4 July 2017 was an opportunity for curriculum policy officers from around the country to discuss what structural features might be present in the next generation Australian Curriculum. The second event on Wednesday, 5 July 2017 was a day for school leaders to consider how they could develop innovative curriculum now, within the construct of the current Australian Curriculum.

In all those conversations, assessment was a critical issue. It is one thing to develop a list of preferred 21st century skills that students should learn, but it is quite another to be able to effectively assess whether students have in fact learnt them. Professor Claire Wyatt-Smith and her team from the Learning Sciences Institute of Australia (LSIA), are supporting independent schools in a project to facilitate exploration of the assessment of innovative curriculum.

ISQ has also produced a Differentiation and the Australian Curriculum brochure which highlights ideas, strategies and suggestions for ways independent schools could cater for the needs of the diverse range of learners across their classrooms.

Leading Globally Ready Schools

The Asia Education Foundation (AEF) is excited to be offering ISQ member schools exclusive participation in local and international education programs in 2019.

2019 Programs

ISQ member schools are invited to declare their non-binding Expression of Interest for a 2019 program by no later than Tuesday 2 October 2018. 

About AEF

AEF is based at Asialink at The University of Melbourne. AEF works nationally and internationally to lead, promote and support engagement with Asia in Australian schools. As exemplified by both the Gonski review and the new ‘global competency’ assessment in PISA in 2018, it is critical that independent schools are developing the curriculum and competencies relevant to our young Australians for this century. AEF understands the significance of school leaders being empowered to lead schools that are “globally ready”. AEF delivers curriculum and research resources, professional learning, youth programs and a wide range of strategic partnerships for and with education stakeholders. ISQ is delighted to partner with AEF on these important initiatives.

Additional Resources

Further information

For further information or to send an Expression of Interest, please contact:

Jenene Rosser
07 3228 1561  | 


Professional learning and resources

ISQ provides a suite of services including effective and innovative information sessions, workshops and projects on the Australian Curriculum, including on the following two topics:

Building assessment communities

  • promoting capacity building of assessment expertise amongst school staff
  • designing quality assessment tasks
  • developing effective rubrics
  • establishing positive social moderation processes to ensure consistency of teacher judgments.

Curriculum implementation and innovation

  • updates on curriculum
  • strategic decision-making regarding curriculum offerings
  • up-to-date research and information

Australian Curriculum courses, and online communities where education professionals can share ideas and resources, are available on ISQ’s learning management system Connect&Learn. Here you will also find examples of assessments and curriculum innovation, reporting templates and other useful resources.


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