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Beginning with the End in Mind

On the second week of this term, the Year 11 and 12 students had a 2.5 day student retreat at Swan Valley Adventure Centre in Middle Swan. Part of the retreat program was to give the students an overview of the “Seven Habits of Highly Effective Teens”. One of the habits is beginning with the end in mind. In this article I would like to give a brief overview of one of the goals a student can have for the end of their Senior Secondary program – the achievement of WACE (Western Australian Certificate of Education).

According to the Year 12 Information Handbook, the achievement of WACE is an acknowledgement that a student has achieved or exceeded the required minimum standards in an educational program that has suitable breadth and depth.

Before we get into the requirements, please note that two units make up a subject/course. For example, Human Biology in Year 11 is Unit 1 and 2 (two units), and in Year 12 it is Unit 3 and 4 (two units). Also, each unit gets a grade, hence in our example above a student in Human Biology Year 11 will receive a grade in Unit 1 and another grade in Unit 2. Invariably these grades are the same.

WACE Requirements

Breadth and Depth

Completion of a minimum of 20 units, which may include unit equivalents achieved through VET or endorsed programs. However, the 20 units must meet the following requirements:

  • A minimum of 10 Year 12 units or equivalent (a minimum of 5 WACE courses in Year 12)
  • Four units from an English course after Year 10, including at least one pair of Year 12 units from an English course (At Rehoboth, it would either be Year 12 ATAR English, General English, or English Literature)
  • One pair of Year units from each List A (arts/languages/social sciences stream) and List B (mathematics/sciences/technology)

Achievement Standard

  • Achievement of at least 14 C grades or higher, or the equivalent in Year 11 and 12 units.
  • Include at least six C grades or equivalents in Year 12 units
  • Completion of at least four Year 12 ATAR courses or a Certificate II (or higher) VET qualification

Literacy and Numeracy Standard

Demonstration of the minimum standard of literacy and numeracy (this would mean achieving a Band 8 or higher in NAPLAN at Year 9, or through OLNA).

Hopefully knowing these three main standards will help parents in Senior School to work in partnership with our teachers and help students in their academic journey.

In our next article, I would like to offer some answers to questions like:

  • “What other goals are there in Senior Secondary?”
  • “How do we help our students gain momentum or focus?”
  • “How do we help our students get organised?”

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