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New Assessment System “Lego-Like” – Awatere Huata

New Assessment System “Lego-Like” – Awatere Huata


ACT Education Spokesperson, Donna Awatere Huata, has likened the changes to New Zealand’s senior school exams to a badly constructed Lego set

“The pieces just don’t fit,” she said.

The new National Certificate of Educational Achievement (NCA) will mean school certificate, sixth form certificate and bursary will be dropped.

“The changes have been likened to a dumbing-down our education standards – well let me tell you, that is an understatement.

“Making up something from lots of little bits may work well for a good Lego set, but it will not work for qualifications..

“Too many pieces are going to be missing. In particular the ones who require qualitative judgements that test ability, that are more subtle, creative, imaginative or simply more demanding.”

Mrs Huata said the proposed new exam system would be costly to administer and reduce teachers to “high-stakes check-list assessors,” rather than professionals using their judgement to advance the prospects of students.

“The NCEA will lack public credibility, provide an enormous workload for teachers, and even worse, will leave prospective employers without an identifiable benchmark to rate employment candidates.

“In short, it will be totally useless,” said Mrs Huata.

Mrs Huata said she was a firm supporter of reviewing and improving school qualifications but the NCA was not the way to do it.

“The best to do is consign the NCA to the rubbish bin and start again,” Mrs Huata said.


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