We've missed a huge opportunity with the opportunity to review NCEA. Many of the changes have cemented old thinking and old ways of structuring learning in schools when there is a desperate need for new thinking.
While it's awesome to have Achievement Standards that support Maori Performing Arts and that they qualify for UE why are we insisting on calling Te Ao Haka a new 'subject'? This is old thinking. New thinking acknowledges there is a suite of standards that can be grouped together to create a programme of learning for students and that these programmes are not subjects.
I'm not even sure why we have Course Endorsements which are, in reality, Subject endorsements. This old thinking reinforces subjects as the main structure for delivering learning programmes. New thinking has schools developing connected learning programmes which still deliver across them important subject specialist skills and knowledge.
Even if we accept Course Endorsements are a good idea the criteria for them reinforces that external assessment is vital in any learning programme. For some students, a programme almost entirely made up of internal assessments, with very few external assessments, is the best programme for them. But old thinking says that they cannot qualify for this thing called Course Endorsement.
Why are we still talking about 'subject lists' at each level? This is old thinking. New thinking would provide a suite of Achievement Standards grouped into Learning Areas which are used to assess the learning that emerges from the programmes for qualifications.
And this 50/50 split of internals and externals for each 'subject' is so arbitrary and old thinking. New thinking, incorporating the principles of UDL, allows for a broad range of methods of collating evidence of understanding.
I know cleverer people than me will have answers to these, but all of the answers I have seen definitely sit in the old thinking paradigm!
Gripe over (for now)!