According to an education researcher, the National Certificate of Educational Achievement or NCEA pass rates in the Cook Islands and Niue will “fall through the floor” if literacy and numeracy tests become compulsory in 2026.
The article was published this week on Radio New Zealand.
Education Researcher Michael Johnston from Think Tank-a New Zealand Initiative said it was important to certify literacy and numeracy but a big drop in NCEA achievement rates is not desirable.
In responding to this report, Niue’s Education Director-Birtha Togahai said the new literacy and numeracy standards were part of the new changes of the NCEA Review in 2019.
The pilot of the new literacy and numeracy standards were given to Year 9 and Year 10 students this year in preparation for them to sit it in NCEA Level 1 once they its rolled out in 2026,” she added.
Ms Togahai added with all the new standards, it will take time to settle as they prepare their teachers, students and parents to cope with this transition.
The Education Department will support efforts by Niue High School to prepare activities to support parents and caregivers on how they can also support their children at home.
She said this is top priority for the Department in working together with the NZ Ministry of Education and NCEA and NZQA on systems to expedite the support for our students.
And if the New Zealand Government is considering extending the 2026 deadline for the tests and allowing students to use other ways of proving they are literate and numerate, Ms Togahai said they will support the extension of date if its approved as this will allow ample time for them to provide more learning support to the students.