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Achievement still plummeting under Labour

PRESS RELEASE | Erica Stanford MP | 3 October 2023

Achievement still plummeting under Labour

New achievement data shows Labour’s shameful legacy in education with around half of Year 10 students falling basic reading, writing and maths tests, National’s Education spokesperson Erica Stanford says.

“The 2023 NCEA Literacy and Numeracy assessments shows the dire state of education in New Zealand with around half of our students failing numeracy and literacy tests which the OECD says is the minimum young people need for further learning, life and work.

“Of the 41,000 high school students that participated in these assessments 64 per cent passed reading and only 56 per cent passed the numeracy and writing tests.

“Evidence shows that without these literacy and numeracy skills young people find it much harder to succeed in the workforce and earn less later in life.

“Chris Hipkins should be ashamed of these numbers which show the deterioration in his five years as Education Minister. His only achievement as Education Minister has been to spend $5 billion more and hire 1,400 more bureaucrats in Wellington.

“In a last-ditch attempt Labour announced they would increase funding for more tutorial services over the weekend in an effort to conceal their failure which is highlighted by more young people leaving school without the skills they need.

“Rather than band-aids and bureaucrats a world class education system should be relentlessly focused on teaching the basics in the first place.

“National will ensure we teach the Basics Brilliantly, so every young person receives an excellent foundation that lets them live the life that they want.”

National will:

  • Require all primary and intermediate schools to spend an hour on reading, writing and maths every day.

  • Rewrite the curriculum to include clear requirements about the specific knowledge primary and intermediate schools will need to cover each year.

  • Measure each child’s progress against the curriculum at least twice a year using the same robust assessment tool.

  • Provide better training and more tools to support teachers.

  • Guarantee all young people learn to read using a structured literacy approach which is shown to be the best way to teach kids to read.

  • Ban cell phone use at school to allow students to focus on their learning.

“This election is going to be close. Only a National-led government will rebuild the economy to bring down the cost of living, deliver tax relief, restore law and order and improve our education and health systems so they deliver better outcomes for all New Zealanders.”


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