Joy Burch.

Education Minister Joy Burch. Photo: Lyn Mills

The territory’s school students continue to top the nation according to the latest national literacy and numeracy test results.

The preliminary NAPLAN 2013 report, published Friday, ranks the ACT’s year 3, 5, 7 and 9 students first or equal first  in sixteen out of 20 categories.

The national exams test students in five subject areas – reading, persuasive writing, grammar and punctuation, spelling and numeracy.

Canberra students came in at number one in reading, grammar and punctuation and numeracy across all year levels.

The territory’s year nine students topped the country in all five categories of testing.

Canberra students continued to excel in reading, with at least 96 per cent of students at all year levels scoring above or equal to the national minimum score.

ACT Education Minister Joy Burch said the territory had been the highest performing jurisdiction in reading every year since 2008, with students performing significantly above the national mean.

Canberra’s year three students topped the country in reading and numeracy, ranked equal first in grammar and punctuation, second in spelling and third in persuasive writing.

In year five, students were first or equal first in reading, spelling, grammar and punctuation, and numeracy, and second in persuasive writing.

Year seven students were ahead of their peers in other jurisdictions in reading, grammar and punctuation, and numeracy, and ranked second in persuasive writing and spelling.

The ACT has ranked first or equal first in grammar and punctuation and numeracy at all year levels since 2009.

“The pleasing results validate the significant investment the ACT Labor Government makes in our children’s education, and the great work of our fantastic teachers, principals and support staff,” Ms Burch said.

“The ACT recently signed up to the Better Schools (Gonski) reform, which will provide an additional $190 million for all ACT schools over the next six years, and I am confident that this will support our schools to continue to lead the nation.”

In May this year, approximately 17,600 students in years 3, 5, 7 and 9 participated in NAPLAN testing across the ACT.

The NAPLAN 2013 summary report only includes data at the jurisdiction level.

The full National Report which will include final results by demographic and geographic location, is scheduled for release in December 2013.