Govt delivers consistency for assessing Kiwi kids

The Coalition Government is delivering consistency in student assessment, giving parents certainty on how their child’s doing at school, Education Minister Erica Stanford says.

“Currently, the first glimpse at student achievement is when children sit NCEA. It’s far too late to learn in Year 10 or 11 if they have not been adequately prepared with the skills and knowledge they need to succeed.

“At the earliest opportunity, parents deserve to know how their kids are progressing at school and have confidence they are moving in the right direction.

“That’s why the Government is introducing consistent assessment tools so no matter where you live in New Zealand, parents and teachers will know more about how our young people are learning.”

From 2025, all children in their first year of schooling will have an opportunity to run through a phonics check, to help teachers understand how well a child can read words by sounding out letters.

“This will be done after 20 weeks of schooling and repeated after 40 weeks. It will help teachers identify and arrange additional support for those who need it right at the start of the child’s education,” Ms Stanford says.

Progression monitoring on reading, writing and maths will also be introduced for children in years 3 through 8.

These will be done twice each year and will inform teachers about the next steps needed for a child’s learning.

The Curriculum Insights and Progress Study, which provides a national view of literacy and numeracy against the New Zealand Curriculum, will also be expanded. From 2025, it will assess reading, writing and maths annually for Years 3, 6 and 8.

“Further work is being done to review the types of targeted and tailored support we make available for those who need additional help. 

This is another step the Government is taking in lifting student achievement and closing the equity gap,” Ms Stanford says. 

Notes to editors

Schools will be given a choice of which assessment tool to use.

The standardised test for schools will be:

Those using the New Zealand Curriculum will use either e-asTTle or Progressive Assessment Tests (PATs).

For those learning through te reo Māori, the tools will be either e-asTTle or Te Waharoa Ararau.