From the Principal

Dear Parents and Caregivers,

There has been some coverage over the past month or so in the media regarding the changes to Level 1 NCEA for 2024 and beyond. I wanted to use this opportunity to clarify our position and what we are planning to implement going forward.

The conversation around Level 1 started in 2019 when the changes were first signalled. We started by surveying our Year 12 and 13 students to ascertain their feelings around maintaining the full Level 1 qualification. Their overall response was to keep some Level 1 assessment, and a few of the reasons they provided are below:

  • Most students experienced success and gained confidence with NCEA.
  • They valued the opportunity to experience the NCEA external examination environment.
  • Many students made simple errors when completing assessment tasks in Year 11, such as poor time management, inadequate application of study skills, omitting pieces of work, and not reading the question thoroughly, as well as being confronted with language they had not seen before.
  • They felt that through the experience of Level 1, they gained valuable knowledge to take into Level 2.

An overarching theme from the feedback was that students felt there was too much assessment in Level 1, which created stress at busy times when they were managing multiple assessments. Since this feedback was collected, we have been actively reducing the number of assessments in our Year 11 courses with a focus on quality learning.

Over the past two years we have designed Year 9 to 11 courses to reflect curriculum changes and to ensure courses contain essential knowledge and skills in all subject areas. From 2024, NCEA assessments will fit where they are appropriate rather than being the driver of course design. This could mean that Level 1 assessments may be included in some Year 10 courses, and Level 2 assessments in some Year 11 courses. We expect that there will be a variety of scenarios across different subject areas.

Some of our students may attain the Level 1 qualification in Year 11, however our focus will be on ensuring this cohort of students have gained the Literacy and Numeracy requirements for NCEA and preparing our students for their transition to tertiary education, vocational training, or the world of work. We must ensure that when each of our students walks out of the school gate for the last time they have the skills, knowledge, and quality of qualification to continue on a successful pathway.

Ngā mihi
David Burton
Acting Principal