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A petition to improve the quality of school and parental reporting has been launched today by National’s Education Spokesperson Nikki Kaye.

“Labour’s dismantling of National Standards without having a system of standardised reporting to replace it with demonstrates a complete disregard for parents and the needs of children across the country,” Ms Kaye says.

“National believes that parents should be able to see how their kids are doing at school and that schools should be accountable for lifting achievement.

“National Standards were a key part of ensuring that. Scrapping National Standards without a replacement system means that parents will be left in the dark about where their child is at in their learning and children will have at least a year’s gap in their achievement records.

“That’s not good enough and that’s why National is launching this petition today.

“In August last year, National announced a policy to develop National Standards to report across more of the curriculum beyond the core competencies. However, we recognised this would require years of investment and implementation. That would mean we’d have to retain National Standards in the meantime so parents could still track their child’s progress.

“In scrapping National Standards without having a replacement, the Government changed the National Administration Guidelines to remove the requirement for schools to report achievement information to the Ministry of Education.

“This means that schools can use any system they choose for reporting to parents and, while there are international reports to compare to, there will be no nationwide picture of achievement.

“That will make it much more difficult for parents to challenge a school if they have concerns about how the school has assessed their child, because there’s less ability to compare against other schools.

“The petition also calls for investment in online tools to ensure parents and teachers can have confidence in the data that’s being reported, but also have greater frequency of reporting in the future.

“We are confident that thousands of New Zealanders will come on board to restore the basic concept that parents have the right to frequent and reliable school reports.”

The petition can be signed here.

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