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William Ross State High School operates under the implementation of a national framework for schooling, aligning with the aim of raising education standards and achieving nationally consistent curriculum, assessment and reporting.
Junior Secondary students study the Australian Curriculum for their core subjects. Students also participate in academic lessons in Health and Physical Education and the Languages (Japanese or Chinese) as well as completing subjects from Technology and The Arts areas. Year 7 provides the platform for building the knowledge, skills, experience and understanding required for the junior secondary phase of learning. At the completion of Year 9, successful students will be awarded the JCE (Junior Certificate of Education). This is a school-based certificate, pioneered by William Ross State High School that recognises the completion of the student’s junior phase of learning.

In 2019 a new senior assessment and tertiary entrance arrangement will be introduced for students across Queensland.

There are three key changes:

  • the introduction of a new senior assessment model that combines school-based assessment (set and marked by teachers), with external assessment (developed and marked by the QCAA).
  • the development of new moderation processes.
  • the removal of the Overall Position (OP) rank and the introduction of the Australian Tertiary Admission Rank (ATAR).

In 2019​, year 12 students completing their senior studies will continue under the current schooling system which awards students who are eligible for university entrance an OP (Overall Position) and Field Position. Students entering Year 11 in 2019 will commence their studies under the new schooling system which is the Australian Tertiary Admission Rank (ATAR).

In 2020​, the standard pathway to tertiary study for Queensland Year 12's will change from OP to ATAR.​