High school's 'forgotten' years
The first two years of high school have become "forgotten years", the Education Review Office fears.
A study based on 68 secondary schools reviewed in 2011 found limited performance information was being gathered about students in years 9 and 10, and the information that was being gathered was not well used.
ERO chief review officer Dr Graham Stoop said schools were not very effective at using literacy and maths achievement information to improve learning for students in years 9 and 10.
"These are the foundation years for secondary schooling and it's vital that schools get it right for these students," he said.
Just 7 per cent of schools had highly effective processes for knowing about students' achievement and progress in years 9 and 10, while 57 per cent had partially effective processes, and 36 per cent had processes that were minimally effective or not effective.
Years 9 and 10 seemed to have become "forgotten years" for assessing students' progress and feeding the information into classroom programmes, Stoop said.
The report found that in many schools years 9 and 10 students were taught a predetermined curriculum in literacy and mathematics that took no account of their individual strengths and needs.