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NZQA must clear up scholarship rumours

Hon Bill English - National Party Education Spokesman

31 January 2005

NZQA must clear up scholarship rumours

National's Education spokesman, Bill English, says the NZQA must act quickly to dispel rumours of heavily lopsided scholarship results.

Mr English understands that of the 900 students sitting the scholarship English exam, 300 were successful. On the other hand, just nine of the 1,000 Biology students entered in the exam won the scholarship.

"I have been told that while just one scholarship was awarded in Media Studies, the majority of students who sat Drama and German were successful," says Mr English.

"The NCEA Scholarship is New Zealand's premiere academic award for school-leavers. It is imperative that the process that decides on the recipients of the awards is fair and rigorous.

"The NZQA must move quickly to publish full scholarship results and deal with these rumours. If they are true, the public scepticism of the NCEA will worsen."

More than 5,000 students from 40 schools enrolled in the Cambridge exam system as an alternative to the NCEA last year.

"Too many schools already direct their high-achieving students to the Cambridge exams, if the NZQA doesn't ensure consistency in its scholarship exams, more schools will look for alternatives for their students," says Mr English.


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