Changes to strengthen NCEA

Our secondary school qualification, NCEA, is to be strengthened to address over-assessment and fragmented learning.

Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced on the 13 May that the improvements will reduce teacher and student workload, with a shift away from fragmented, small assessments, toward larger, more unified blocks of learning and assessment. Literacy and numeracy requirements will also be strengthened.

Around 16,000 New Zealanders took part in the year-long review of NCEA, and the Ministry of Education is to continue to work with stakeholders to confirm a detailed design and implementation plan for the changes by the end of the year.

Improvements include:

  • Simplifying administration and assessment to reduce workload on students and teachers
  • Refocusing on fewer, larger standards within courses that are more unified
  • Ensuring parity for Mātauranga Māori in NCEA
  • Signalling clear pathways to further education and employment
  • Making NCEA more accessible for students with disabilities or additional learning support needs.
  • Retaining level 1 as an optional level for schools to offer
  • Strengthening literacy and numeracy requirements.

Mr Hipkins announced that fees will be removed for students who sit NCEA and NZ Scholarship. This means the families and caregivers of around 168,000 students will no longer have to pay $76.70 a year.

The NCEA Online programme is also to be extended, with 14 subjects to be offered digitally this year across all three levels for those schools that take part.

Further information

The new home for NCEA(external link) 

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