Best Start Kindergarten Assessment

The Best Start Kindergarten Assessment is an optional NSW Department of Education literacy and numeracy assessment for schools. It is one type of assessment designed to identify each student’s literacy and numeracy skills at the beginning of Kindergarten.

The Best Start Kindergarten Assessment is mapped to the Literacy and Numeracy Learning Progressions. The NSW English and Mathematics syllabuses map to the indicators in the Learning Progressions.

The Best Start Kindergarten Assessment is administered by a teacher with a child one on one, focusing on what that child can do. It is suggested that the assessment be completed within the first five weeks of school.


There is a cost for NSW independent schools to access the Best Start Kindergarten Assessment. The 2020 costs are detailed below. The NSW Department of Education will invoice schools for payment.

The paper-based Best Start Kindergarten Assessment folder:

  • is available to purchase for $50 per Kindergarten teacher which contains the resources required to administer the assessment.
  • includes the Best Start Kindergarten Assessment administration guide along with a student recording form that can be photocopied.
  • provides further details for schools in preparing for and conducting the assessment. Interested schools will use the 2019 version folders in 2020 (this folder will not be updated for 2020).

The online Best Start Kindergarten Assessment:

  • is available at a cost of $2 per student, plus $50 per Kindergarten teacher for the 2019 Best Start Kindergarten Assessment folder
  • is supported by software that captures student information to support planning
  • automatically transfers information to PLAN2, mapping to the National Literacy and Numeracy Learning Progressions
  • enables teachers to view student skills as soon as the assessment is lodged.

More information

Confirmation of participation in Best Start Kindergarten 2020

Opt-in has closed for 2020.