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The third NCEA CoLab event was held at Westpac Stadium in Wellington on 5/6 December.

Discussions at the CoLab

Discussion were structured across ten topics:

  1. How can the design and implementation of NCEA support Ākonga Māori to succeed as Māori?
  2. How can the design and implementation of NCEA be inclusive of, and equitable for the success of Pacific learners?
  3.  How can the way we arrange levels, courses and credits help all students achieve their potential?
  4. How do we determine the literacy and numeracy that young people need and how can NCEA ensure that young people attain this?
  5. How can NCEA show students skills and capabilities as well as their knowledge?
  6. How can we ensure that NCEA assessment practices are inclusive of all identities, cultures, and abilities?
  7. How can the design of NCEA enable meaningful learning?
  8. How can clearer and more equitable guidance about NCEA pathways and transitions for every learner be effectively provided?
  9. How can we encourage more quality teaching and learning and less focus on credits?
  10. How can we ensure workloads in NCEA are purposeful for students and educators?

Summary document

>> Dowload the CoLab summary document.

Group discussions on NCEA

Themes aligning

Overall the discussions at CoLab were consistent with insights gathered during previous engagement activity and the findings of the NZCER report. Some themes are starting to come together clearly:

  • Refocusing assessment onto the most important things, including more relevant, real-world content
  • Increasing the status of Mātauranga Māori and Pacific worldviews in the qualification
  • Building cultural competency and capability in the education workforce to work with diverse communities including Pacific and Asian communities
  • Providing more support for teachers and kaiako to practice effective and inclusive assessment
  • Maintaining flexible qualification pathways, but ensuring these were all high quality and had a clear purpose.

However, there were diverse views on many other issues, particularly about the “how”. For example some attendees rejected suggestions of a ‘common core’, while others stressed the fundamental importance of functional literacy, or emphasised the importance of key skills and competencies including Mātauranga Māori and digital literacy for all learners.

In general

In general, when discussing solutions, participants tended to focus either on:

  • various small (but significant) reductions in the current flexibility of NCEA - for example, the idea of fewer, larger standards
  • creating supports for users to benefit more consistently from existing flexibility - for example, the idea of holistic reporting of quality teaching and learning.

Discussion of better outcomes within existing NCEA flexibility often touched on a more consistent understanding of NCEA’s potential, and/or more consistent implementation of NCEA across settings and learner groups.

A strong recurring theme was better resourcing and outcomes for Māori and Pacific learners.

 Students at the December Colab