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Strong gains in student achievement

Hon Hekia Parata
Minister of Education

24 July 2014

Strong gains in student achievement

Education Minister Hekia Parata says the latest achievement information shows children throughout the country are doing better across the education system.

Ms Parata says the Public Achievement Information released today is evidence that moves by the Government, reflected in the work of those in the education system, is making a real difference in educational achievement.

“From early childhood education through to NCEA achievement we’re seeing meaningful progress. It all adds up to kids who will be coming out of our education system with better qualifications and much brighter prospects.

“Providing this information at district and regional levels is leading to a wider engagement by communities in our education challenges.

“Fifteen of our 16 regional council areas had increases from 2011 to 2013 in achievement against National Standards, including gains for Māori students in 14 of those 16 areas.

”More than 400,000 primary kids had their progress assessed in reading, writing and maths last year, and around three quarters were at or above National Standards.

“The continuing focus on achievement and use of good information is paying off because it helps identify the kids who are not doing as well as we want.

“Parents and schools never used to have this sort of very specific information, and now they’re using it to make sure that the kids get what they need when they need it.

Ms Parata says there are now more children in early childhood education.

“Participation in ECE has risen from 94.6 percent of kids starting school in 2011 to 95.9 percent of new entrants, which means they’re much better placed to do well when they get to school.”

Ms Parata says there are also real gains for students ahead of going on to further study or entering the workforce.

“The proportion of 18 year olds with NCEA Level 2, or an equivalent qualification, has gone up from 74.3 percent in 2011 to 78.6 percent in 2013. And Māori and Pasifika achievement rates for NCEA Level 2 or equivalent are improving at a faster rate than overall, although, they started from a lower base so there is more to catch up,” Ms Parata acknowledged.

Ms Parata says the improvement in achievement and participation rates is a great foundation for doing even better, particularly for Māori and Pasifika students and to narrow the gap between boys and girls.

“Better assessment information and innovative teaching approaches are helping some schools to raise achievement levels for those failed by the system. But we need to extend the better use of data and these innovative approaches to all our schools to ensure more students enjoy the success they deserve.

“Our $359 million Investing in Educational Success initiative will help keep good teachers in the classroom, and will allow them to share their knowledge and creativity in all schools as well as with parents, families and whānau.

“We know that the quality of teaching and leadership has the greatest in-school impact on student achievement. But we need to see more and Investing in Educational Success will give a real lift to achievement levels, especially for those who need more support.

“Accurate and easily accessible student achievement information along with quality teaching and innovative practice in all our schools will, over time, ensure that all our kids get the educational qualifications they need for success in the modern world,” says Ms Parata.

For more information visit www.educationcounts.govt.nz.

Regional CouncilSchools reporting (2013)Students (2013)Reading: Percent At/Above (2013)Reading: % point diff 2011 - 2013Mathematics: Percent At/Above (2013)Mathematics: % point diff 2011 - 2013Writing: Percent At/Above (2013)Writing: % point diff 2011 - 2013
Bay of Plenty1112712177.
Hawkes Bay1001579975.
West Coast32292278.26.572.85.567.26.4


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