INDEPENDENT NEWS

Maharey responds to 'lone' NCEA critic

Published: Thu 8 Dec 2005 05:51 PM
Maharey responds to 'lone' NCEA critic
Education Minister Steve Maharey today responded to further attempts by "lone critic" Bill English to undermine confidence in the exam system.
"NZQA is running an open and transparent marking process which will ensure the results are consistent and fair," Steve Maharey said.
"NZQA's Monitoring and Marking Update issued today is correct. To date, marking has been suspended (and resumed), for 11 out of 335 standards.
"NZQA will continue to release details of remarking as soon as a need has been identified and will do so until all standards are marked.
"All markers have been fully advised of the marking process. If any markers have concerns about the process, including instructions they receive from lead markers, NZQA has processes in place for them to make these concerns known, including, if they wish, contacting Acting Chief Executive Karen Sewell directly."
"The process does not involve any 'unofficial' or 'secret' re-marking as Mr English has suggested. In fact this is the most open and transparent exam process this country has ever seen.
"The fact that NZQA is remarking some standards after adjusting the marking schedule means students, parents and teachers can have confidence that the outcomes this year will be fair and consistent, and that the safeguards put in place are working, and working early."
Steve Maharey said he had forwarded the attached documents to Bill English to assist him to better understand the NCEA system and the marking process.
Note: a 'standard' is only part of an exam paper, not the whole paper
Clarification of NCEA process The process that has been applied every year since NCEA was first examined is as follows: The Ministry sets the standards The examiner sets the exam and prepares the marking schedule
The exam is set to encourage students to show they can reach the standard.
The standard remains constant but the marking schedule can be adjusted if it is not clear enough, not comprehensive enough, or too specific.
Key steps of the marking process as previously advised in press release of 5 December are: The examiner writes a draft marking schedule for the paper The chief marker marks a number of “test scripts” Adjustments may be made if the marking schedule is not clear enough, not comprehensive enough, or too specific Markers are then trained using the adjusted marking schedule A further batch of papers are marked and checked The marking schedule can then be altered again if necessary Marking proceeds If the pattern of results is unexpected marking can be halted and adjustments made to the marking schedule

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