NCEA review to modernise school education system

Chris Hipkins

Overassessment of students and teacher workload will be addressed as part of the National Certificate of Educational Achievement (NCEA) review starting early this year.

The review’s Terms of Reference were released on December 14, 2017.

The NCEA review is an opportunity to refine and strengthen our key national qualification for young people leaving school, and to ensure that NCEA remains relevant in the modern world.

Focus on the Future

The Government is committed to delivering a future-focused education system that equips students with skills and knowledge to be globally competitive.

The introduction of NCEA represented a significant modernisation of the system of secondary school assessment.

However, the full potential of NCEA has yet to be fully realised.

This review will build on what has been achieved with NCEA to date, and respond to emerging needs and opportunities.

Overassessment, an issue

Students and teachers have told us that overassessment is a real issue and impacts their wellbeing and workload. This and the importance of teaching life skills in schools, such as resilience, creativity, communication and adaptability, will form part of the review.

The review will also look at the role of each level of NCEA, particularly the structure and relevance of NCEA Level 1 and whether all young people should attempt it.

The Education Ministry will run the review, starting with a range of stakeholders and opening up for all New Zealanders to comment and contribute.

New Advisory Group

I will also establish a Ministerial Advisory Group of innovative thinkers, who can challenge traditional thinking on senior secondary education and assessment, to lead the initial phase of the review with a discussion document for public consultation in April 2018.

I am keen to hear from young people who are currently working towards an NCEA.

I have set up a youth advisory group and will be seeking their insights early on in the process, and I want other students to contribute as well during the wider public consultation phase.

The Terms of Reference for the review and the Cabinet Paper ‘Reviewing NCEA’ are available at www.education.govt.nz/ncea-review.

Chris Hipkins is Education Minister of New Zealand.

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