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OECD study confirms gap between high and low achievers


Anne Tolley

7 December, 2010

OECD study confirms gap between high and low achievers

Education Minister Anne Tolley says the findings of an international study by the OECD show that more needs to be done to lift achievement for all New Zealand students.The 2009 results from the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) compare the performance of 15-year-olds in reading literacy, maths and science.

?We have a lot to be proud of, as this study confirms our top students are among the best in the world,? says Mrs Tolley.

?In reading, maths and science we performed well above the average for OECD countries. This is a credit to our teachers, students, parents and our education system.

?Our challenge is to work together to address the issues raised in the report.

?New Zealand continues to have a disproportionate number of lower achievers, and this hasn?t changed in the past nine years.

?Further, there has been no change in our reading performance since 2000, and in maths since 2003.

"All children deserve the chance to reach their potential, so there is an urgent need to lift achievement levels and raise the bar for our young people.

?National Standards in reading, writing and maths are helping to identify and provide support for primary and intermediate students and schools needing additional help. They will also ensure that students arrive at secondary school with the basic skills needed to be on course to reach at least NCEA Level 2, and some schools are already seeing a difference.

?Meanwhile, for 16 and 17 year olds, the Youth Guarantee is seeing encouraging results with Trades Academies set to follow next year, to give students worthwhile qualifications and pathways to employment.

?This Government is serious about education. We won?t continue to allow up to one in five of our students to be failed by the schooling system. Every single young New Zealander must be given the opportunity to succeed.? 2012