National Party Leader
31 August 2005
National wants 'Plain English' reporting in schools
National Party Leader Don Brash today announced that National will introduce 'Plain English Reporting' in schools so
that parents know how well their children are doing in the classroom and can get help if necessary.
''Parents have the right to know if their child is reading, writing and using numbers at the expected standard or if
they are falling behind. But too often they are served up with politically correct reports that give them no clear idea
of their child's progress," says Dr Brash.
"Schools already use a range of testing regimes to assess student performance but many parents don't see the results of
any of that testing until their child sits NCEA, by which time it may be too late.
"National will work with schools to set the national standards using benchmarks in existing tests. There is no need for
more tests, just better reporting of the information to parents.
"We will require all schools to provide parents with reports of their child's progress against these standards and the
performance of their school relative to similar schools.
"We will also require the Ministry of Education to make comparative school-wide performance information available to
parents, rather than just to school principals.
"National believes it is wrong that extensive information collected about school performance is kept secret from
"National will continue this emphasis on common-sense reporting through to NCEA level by introducing summary subject
grades for NCEA results.
"Parents, employers and even students have difficulty interpreting NCEA results and National wants to make it easier for
"Raising literacy and numeracy standards is a top priority for National. We believe that an education system where
failure, and problems that could lead to failure, are reported is vital to achieving high standards in education," says