1st August 2018


The NCEA system is wrong. Imagine we are vegetables in a garden, we are not going to grow faster if we keep getting picked out of the ground to check how much we’ve grown. If you didn’t understand that then this might make better sense, constantly being tested, watched and graded doesn’t mean we are going to end up being any smarter nor stronger students. Pressure doesn’t work that way. I know for me I am most likely to succeed if I feel there is not a great deal of pressure on me, because who really likes to be pressured? Today I am going to be discussing the ways that the NCEA system does not work, how I believe it could be changed and how school grades don’t really define your for life.

First of all, Im going to hit you with something that is generally pretty frowned upon to say. The NCEA system does not work, not for me and not for a lot of people within this school. But here at MAC, NCEA is the only system offered to us once you get to year 11. So what are we supposed to do but suffer through the long years ahead of level 1,2 and 3. See the fact that we don’t have a choice has a serious effect on the people, like me, that don’t perform to there best ability under the ways of NCEA’s testing. For those of you that don’t know, we are expected to learn a lot of new material in usually about 2 to 5 weeks then asked to show all that you have learn’t within an hour. Now to me that just makes no sense, not only this but the thought that you have credits riding on how well you perform makes it unthinkable to do excellence work.

I believe the NCEA system could be improved in many ways, one being that instead of using the current system we could use a way more like the driving tests here in New Zealand. We would get to study a topic for a while then take a written test much like we do now but you would either pass or fail. No grading saying excellence or merit because it is proven that if you get mostly achieves you are going to only do as well as an achieved because you have convinced yourself that you are average and cant work at the level of the “excellence students”. The driving test again are a great example, once you pass the test you have something to show for it. People can see that you aren’t completely useless because now you can drive right? Whereas once you finish NCEA all you have to show for it is a whole bunch of credits that now mean nothing. By using the pass or fail grading you only have to strive to pass and then feel good about passing not feel bad because you only passed.

Another way it could be changed is we would use passing and failing but you would get a percentage back so that you could still differentiate the high passes and low passes without the titles like “excellence student”. As for the credits, I believe this should be changed because trying to do your best and pass is one thing, but to throw the pressure of needing these last two credits otherwise your not going to pass the year and therefore not going to succeed in life is crazy.

Thus leading me onto my next topic, your school grades do not define your life. During school you will be told that you need to work hard and get endorsements or you are going to go no where in life but I can tell you for a fact that right there is a logical fallacy because once you leave school weather you got 80 credits and scraped through the system or got excellence endorsement in all three years it does not matter. When your applying for a job they are going to look at how you do in university and things like how you work with others not if you got a merit in your algebra test in year 11. Teachers are constantly telling us “these next years are so important” and “these years are the gateway to the rest of your life” well no, I do believe that while it is a good look having these things on your record, am I really going no where in life solely because I passed the year with no endorsements in level 1?

Today I have spoke about why I believe that the NCEA system is wrong, some of the few ways we could change NCEA and the fact that your grades in school will not define the life you have once you finish year 13. Now I know it may sound like Im just your average bear saying all this because Im jealous that I am not one of these “excellence students” that I keep mentioning but really I am just trying to make the point that there is many people, like me that struggle with the way NCEA is run. So i’ll just leave you with this thought in your head, said by someone we all know, Albert Einstein “Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will spend its whole life believing that it is stupid.”
Thank You.

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