Australia’s performance on PIRLS was not as high as might have been thought, given that our students generally perform well on PISA reading literacy. However there is also a wide gap in achievement on PISA between students from a disadvantaged background and students from an affluent background. While some students in disadvantaged schools perform well, and some students in affluent schools perform poorly, one way for Australia to improve its performance on international assessments is to improve the performance of all students, particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds.
Thomson, S. (2013, November 01). Snapshots issue 2: Excellence and equity. Snapshots. 2(2) https://research.acer.edu.au/snapshots/vol2/iss2/1