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9 March 2018

posted 8 Mar 2018, 17:48 by Carolyn Brett
As you will have no doubt heard, the end of National Standards was announced at the end of last year. A year before National Standards came into being, the New Zealand Curriculum expectations were developed. Enter National Standards and this piece really got put aside.

Now we have a fantastic opportunity to highlight those curriculum expectations and more. Our reporting systems, sharing both progress and achievement will continue. You will still meet with teachers four times this year. Your children will be central to both the Goal Setting Meetings and the Group Student Led Conferences (Terms 1 and 3) and you will be meeting with teachers, without your child, in Terms 2 and 4 to receive both verbal and written reports. 

Whilst the Ministry of Education team is busy behind the scenes undertaking consultation as to what reporting across learning areas could look like in the future, we want to be talking with you as to what's important to you in terms of reporting on progress. What do you really, really want to know? What's important for our children to know?

The Assessment section in the New Zealand Curriculum document speaks loudly:

"Assessment for the purpose of improving student learning is best understood as an ongoing process that arises out of the interaction between teaching and learning. It involves the focused and timely gathering, analysis, interpretation, and use of information that can provide evidence of student progress."

The Education Minister, Chris Hipkins, is aiming for transparency and therefore all of the Cabinet Papers can be located on the Ministry of Education website. This paper outlines the removal of National Standards, if you are interested.

Some of you may have heard the interview with Sir Ken Robinson on RNZ last Sunday morning. I recommend a listen.

Sir Ken picks up on some points about the difference between having high standards (which, of course, we want!) and National Standards. He also discusses the 'bleaching out' of education and how this militates against the personalisation most required for these times and our children's  future. 

It's no secret, I'm a fan and I'm keen to read his new book coming out soon - for parents: "You, Your Child, and School"From The New York Times bestselling author of The Element and Creative Schools comes an essential book for parents to help their children get the education they need to live fulfilling, productive lives.

Let me know if you are interested and read it, as if a few people are keen, we could get together after we have digested it for a bit of a debrief and chat big ideas.