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Some Common Sense At Last

1 March 2000

SOME COMMON SENSE AT LAST

“The decision of the Government to defer for one year the introduction of the National Certificate of Educational Achievement is a rare piece of common sense in education”, said Simon Carlaw, Chief Executive of the Manufacturers Federation.

“Introduction of the Certificate is an important move, not one to be taken lightly. More time is needed to make sure we get a system that really will address the serious shortcomings throughout the education system that are contributing to skills shortages.”

“We now have the opportunity to open the issue up to the informed debate which was missing when the National Certificate was first mooted during the time of the previous Government. This cannot be left solely to the education industry and its unions. Parents and prospective employers are also key stakeholders in the process.

“Parents and employers need to be comfortable that introduction of the Certificate will make a real contribution to addressing the failure rates evident in our schools. One area we know there are concerns about is the lack of benchmarking of the new certificate against internationally recognised standards. We need to be sure that this is not another bold experiment that will provide evidence for others to avoid.

“We need to make the best use of the time which is now available to ensure we put in place the best system possible to measure achievement by pupils and providers, and to recognise excellence.

Further comments:

Simon Carlaw telephone 04 473-3000 (bus)
04 476-7729 (pvt)

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