Compulsory teaching requirements for maths, reading and writing

  • Core teaching requirements for maths, reading and writing to become compulsory
  • Will become a legal requirement in the Education and Training Act
  • Makes the teaching of maths, reading and writing consistent across the country
  • Core teaching requirements to be released in Term 4 2023 and used from 2024

The Government is taking action to make sure every child leaves school with a bright future and equipped with a foundational knowledge in maths, reading and writing by making their teaching requirements compulsory and consistent, Minister of Education Jan Tinetti announced today.

“We have been working on a model that will see maths, reading and writing taught the same way right across the country,” Jan Tinetti said.

“Today I’m announcing that we will legislate these core teaching requirements so that all young people, regardless of where they go to school, get the same education.

“We have great teachers, but historically the curriculum hasn’t always been clear about how core subjects should be taught, and it’s meant there are wide variations of teaching. We’re changing that.

“The compulsory core teaching requirements will outline what teachers have to cover off at every year level across a child’s time at school.

“Teachers will be supported with guidance, professional development, and materials to implement these changes and ensure there is consistency across all schools to give all kids equal opportunity.

“This, along with the new maths and literacy co-requisite at secondary schools, means employers anywhere in New Zealand can expect young people to have core maths, reading and writing skills when they leave school, and it will also help those wanting to go on to further education or training to achieve University Entrance or other requirements,” Jan Tinetti said.

The Government is also continuing to implement learning progress steps so teachers can track a child’s progress over their education.

“Learning progress steps give parents an overview of their child’s achievement and enable them to work with teachers to support their child’s progress,” Jan Tinetti said.

“Every child is unique and the changes we’re making will give parents confidence that their kids are supported to learn maths, reading and writing skills in the way the suits them best.

“There will still be flexibility around how different students learn best, however what they learn and when they learn it will be much clearer.

The updated curriculum for English, mathematics and statistics will be used in schools from the start of 2025, with core teaching requirements becoming compulsory in all schools by 2026.

“These changes set clear expectations for schools and signify the importance the Government places on strong foundational skills in early learning and schooling.

“This Government is absolutely determined that every child leaves school with a good knowledge of maths, reading and writing to set them up for future success,” Jan Tinetti said.