NCEA pass rates breaking through at Wainuiomata High School

Posted on 2015-08-05 by RLH

Beverlee Taingahue wants to be the first child in her family to get NCEA level 3 - a dream that she did not think was possible until four months ago. The year 11 Wainuiomata High School student is in the school's Trades Academy, a programme for low-achievers that helps them get NCEA level 1 by working in partnership with trade courses at WelTec in Petone. The students work for three days a week at the high school, one day at Weltec's carpentry school and another at its engineering school.

Taingahue said that without the class she would have been failing and probably would have stopped going to class. "I wouldn't even get 20 credits if I was just in normal school. I wouldn't even attend half of them. I don't reckon I would have passed my level 1 this year...because I didn't believe in myself." Now she hopes to go to WelTec next year and complete one of its hospitality courses or train to be a flight attendent. If she passes NCEA level 3 courses, she will be the first in her family to do so. "I feel really good about myself. I never thought I would be doing [trades academy] as I don't like getting my hands dirty, but I ... am loving [it] better than my normal classes. It's made me realise that I can do it, I can get my credits."

Wainuiomata High School has struggled to impress assessors from the Education Review Office - a limited statutory manager has been appointed at the school. However, it has made some genuine gains in its NCEA pass rates. The school's level 1 participation-based pass rate has gone from 35.6 percent in 2004 to 76.7 percent last year. Level 2 and 3 results have had similar increases, up 58 and 22 percentage points, respectively, since 2004. Even more impressively, the roll-based level one pass rate has more than doubled from 30 per cent in 2012 to 66 per cent.