The English K-10 Syllabus (2022) replaces the English K-10 Syllabus (2012) from 2024.

The English K-10 Syllabus 2022 (Years 7–10) content builds on the foundational skills developed in the earlier years and this supports the growing knowledge, understanding and skills identified in the focus areas.

The Statement of Equity PrinciplesExternal link underpin the English K-10 Syllabus (2022), ensuring inclusivity of every student, including Aboriginal students, students with disability, students learning English as an additional language or dialect, and gifted and talented students.

What you need to know

  • The English K-10 Syllabus (2022) will be taught in all NSW high schools from 2024.
  • The department is recommending a staggered implementation to ensure continuity of learning for Years 7 to 10. In a staggered implementation approach, the English K-10 Syllabus (2022) will be implemented first to Years 7 and 9 (2024) and in the following year to Years 8 and 10 (2025).
  • The syllabus is available via a digital platform and is a live document. Teacher advice and support materials will continue to be added throughout the implementation process.
  • Engaging with quality texts remains central to the study of English.
  • There are pedagogical changes including a focus on conceptual understandings of English.
  • There is an increased emphasis on the importance and value of reading for pleasure, challenge and enjoyment.
  • The National Literacy Learning Progressions Version 3.0 are mapped to content.
  • The NSW Department of Education will be providing support materials to schools to assist and guide the implementation process.

The English 7–10 Syllabus (2022) includes:

  • a new structure that builds on the foundational literacy skills and conceptual understanding across all outcomes, making clear the essential knowledge, skills and understandings for English
  • unique organisation for English K–2, 3–6 and 7–10
  • the organisation of content that supports a conceptual approach to understanding and responding to texts
  • new outcomes and content that are informed by evidence that identify the skills needed by all students to develop competence in reading, viewing and listening to texts, and expressing ideas and composing texts
  • updated text requirements which mandate the teaching of a range of texts from Australian authors including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander authors
  • the provision of content examples to support interpretation of some syllabus content points, which are clearly separated from the outcome content
  • the provision of content examples for most Life Skills content points to provide additional ways for students with disability to access the curriculum
  • teaching advice to support understanding of syllabus content and to support teachers to make informed pedagogical decisions.

As per the syllabus organisation diagram in Figure 1, there are 3 focus areas for English Stage 4 and 5. English Life Skills has the additional focus area Communicating. The Life Skills outcomes have been mapped to the Stage 4 and 5 outcomes to facilitate integrated delivery.

Figure 1 – The organisation of English 7–10.

English outcomes and content image is from the English K-10 SyllabusExternal link © NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA) for and on behalf of the Crown in right of the State of New South Wales, [2022].

Prior to implementing the English 7–10 syllabus content, leaders will need to consider the following:

  • The complexities for staff working from 2 syllabuses to teach English 7–10 and the complexities of a staggered implementation structure. Syllabus differences include structure, language and pedagogy.
  • Resource and budget implications, such as:
    • providing time for staff to engage with syllabus expectations and build their skills and understanding to effectively teach and plan for syllabus requirements across 7–10 to implement in 2024
    • determining what resources are currently available to address new text requirements and purchasing additional texts to address areas of need
    • purchasing texts for teacher professional learning and texts to support student engagement in wide reading
    • resources which enable students to demonstrate all outcomes, including accessing and composing multimodal and digital texts
    • equipment that enhances learning and supports all students to access the curriculum such as audio books, screen readers, mini whiteboards and whiteboard markers for each student.

The English K-10 Syllabus (2022) is based on evidence summarised in the Bibliography: K–10External link published by NESA. The syllabus for English 7-10 is based on evidence highlighting that:

  • reading, writing and oral language are reciprocally related and mutually support and enhance one another
  • language is represented in spoken, written, nonverbal, symbol and gestural forms and is a tool for communication that differs according to audience, purpose and context
  • vocabulary knowledge influences the development of reading, writing and oral language skills
  • regular and wide reading enhances fluency, builds vocabulary, supports the development of critical and creative thinking skills and contributes to improved writing and use of language
  • proficient readers draw on background knowledge, vocabulary knowledge and knowledge of text structures to engage critically and creatively with texts
  • to read fluently and comprehend texts, students must be able to decode words accurately and effortlessly (automaticity) and then sequence them into meaningful phrases with the appropriate expression (prosody)
  • explicit spelling instruction improves spelling skills, as well as writing and reading more broadly
  • explicit teaching of compositional skills ensures that students focus on text requirements at the text level, sentence level and word level
  • transcription skills through handwriting and digital technologies are important components of writing fluency and positively impact cognitive load when writing
  • component skills of writing combined with domain knowledge are used to create written texts that are informative, persuasive, imaginative and discursive
  • listening to and engaging with quality texts can build background knowledge and knowledge of text structures to support reading comprehension, expand vocabulary, support the development of writing skills and expose students to new concepts, ideas and modes of expression
  • students must be supported to engage with a broad range of texts representative of diverse perspectives in order to broaden their experiences and become empowered to express themselves.

Knowledge of the syllabus and professional learning needs

  • To what extent do staff understand the syllabus and the evidence underpinning the new syllabus?
  • How will the new syllabus affect classroom practice? What is in place to support and evaluate this practice?
  • What school practices and systems are in place to support teacher professional learning?

Collaborative planning and development

  • Which communities of practice does the school collaborate with to enhance teacher curriculum knowledge and pedagogy?
  • Do staff have the skills and understanding to collaboratively undertake syllabus implementation? What explicit systems are in place to foster collaboration?

Resourcing and support

  • How has the school engaged with departmental resources and support for curriculum implementation, for example, Curriculum Reform Communities, curriculum resources, professional learning, and DEL network initiatives?
  • How are expert teachers identified and used to build the teaching knowledge and capacity of colleagues?
  • How have change management considerations been embedded into the Strategic Improvement Plan to support teachers and sustain and strengthen curriculum implementation?

Ongoing evaluation and refinement

  • What is in place to support and evaluate the impact of these changes in practice to maximise support for teachers and the impact on student outcomes?