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Changes to strengthen NCEA confirmed

The Government has now confirmed the final change package to strengthen NCEA, following a comprehensive review of NCEA and the announcement of seven changes in May 2019. See the Ministry’s press release.

There are two changes to the original proposed package and they relate to strengthening NCEA’s literacy and numeracy requirements:

  • We heard strongly from the sector that it would be more appropriate to offer the new literacy and numeracy assessment to students from Year 9, rather than from Years 7 and 8.
  • Exceptions to the new literacy and numeracy requirement may be appropriate for some young people - particularly those with learning support needs or disabilities and those learning English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL). We’ll explore the possibility of alternative pathways to make sure that these young people can succeed in their next steps.

The changes to NCEA will lead to better transitions to tertiary study and employment for young people, and strengthen our national qualification so that it is better valued and respected both in New Zealand and overseas.

Details and timings for the implementation of the changes will be confirmed in May 2020.

What’s happening?

To ensure our schools and teachers have the time and support to lead the changes to NCEA, no changes will be implemented until 2021. However, work has already begun to progress the changes.

Initiatives include the Review of Achievement Standards pilot phase to trial the approach to developing NCEA subjects, and working with the sector to rebuild achievement standards and resources across all subjects – starting with NCEA Level 1 and the development of a new NCEA Level 1 subject list.

Provisional NCEA Level 1 subject list released for feedback by 20 April 2020

The Ministry’s proposed subject list for NCEA Level 1 is now available for public feedback. Depending on what we hear from you, it will then be finalised so that development work can proceed. This list is designed to encourage a broader, more foundational Level 1 which keeps a diversity of pathways open for students. There will be opportunities for more specialisation at Levels 2 and 3.

Read more and have your say on the provisional NCEA Level 1 subject list

Review of Achievement Standards

The Ministry of Education is also responsible for reviewing the NCEA achievement standards that assess outcomes from the National Curriculum. This review will start in 2020. Work underway includes a pilot phase and the creation of subject expert groups to work with us to review and design new achievement standards for each NCEA subject.