Nanogirl on NCEA review panel

  • 27/01/2018
Dr Michelle Dickinson.
Dr Michelle Dickinson.

Dr Michelle Dickinson, best known as Nanogirl, and a university student have been named in a group to advise the Government on changes to NCEA.

The National Certificate of Educational Achievement is the nation's official secondary school qualification, and is administered by the New Zealand Qualifications Authority.

On Saturday Education Minister Chris Hipkins said Jeremy Baker would chair the advisory group on NCEA.

The group's members are Barbara Cavanagh, Pauline Waiti, Dr Dickinson, Jonathan Gee, Arizona Leger and Charles Darr.

They are a mix of people with experience in the areas of education, student assessment and youth issues.

Ms Leger was head girl of Epsom Girls' Grammar in 2013 and is an advocate for empowering youth voices.

She is a student at Auckland University of Technology, studying for a Bachelor's Degree in Communications.

Dr Dickinson is a nanotechnologist and science educator who created the character Nanogirl, a science-savvy female who uses her engineering skills to solve her way out of challenges in life.

The advisory group will create a discussion document for a public consultation process starting in April.

"I wanted a group of advisers with diverse and potentially disruptive views to challenge us and I am confident they will do that," Mr Hipkins said.

He says there will be a focus on the issues of overassessment of students and teacher workload.

"Students and teachers have been saying things need to be done in these areas to counter teacher burnout and put more emphasis on actual teaching," Mr Hipkins says.

A youth advisory group of students will also provide input.

Nikki Kaye, the education minister in the previous National-led Government, and ACT leader and former associate education minister David Seymour will be included in the consultation process, Mr Hipkins says.

Towards the end of the year the minister will produce recommendations which will be released in early 2019 in a report that will also lay out the next steps to implementation.

The advisory group will meet for the first time next week.