26 Nov 2009

National school standards flawed, say academics

5:45 am on 26 November 2009

Four of the country's top educational academics have condemned the Government's national standards policy.

The standards, which will measure children's achievement in reading, writing and mathematics, will be introduced in primary schools next year.

In an open letter to Education Minister Anne Tolley, four senior assessment academics say the brief time frame allowed for the development of the standards has resulted in fundamental flaws.

Martin Thrupp, from Waikato University's School of Education, says the policy will undermine the new curriculum and damage the self esteem of many young children.

Professor Thrupp says revised standards should be trialled in a sample of up to 200 schools, and the outcome reviewed before introducing a new system.

However the minister says there's nothing new in the letter and she's confident concerns are being addressed.