Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Dear Parents, Caregivers and Friends of St Mary’s School,
Over the next five and a half weeks we begin an unbelievably busy time of the year for schools. Those of
you with children at senior secondary will most likely have already attended senior prize giving and they will now be in the middle of their NCEA externals.
Until my son started the process of gaining his NCEA qualifications I was very sceptical of their academic
rigour, however now that Sean has completed (well almost) two years of study at NCEA I can see the
benefits that they bring. The old system of one three hour exam as the sole way to assess academic
success at both Secondary and Tertiary level was a fine vehicle for some students in some subjects but I
find that NCEA is more equitable and caters for long term learning rather than simply cramming in information to answer the questions set in one three hour exam.
One of the key goals that Sean has learned is that the credits you gain in February, when you have no
pressure are worth just as much as the ones that you need to gain in November in the stress of an
external exam, so aim to run the full race, don’t walk until the finish is in sight and back yourself to have
the spirit to get across the line in time for as the immortal Robbie Burns wrote “The best laid schemes
o mice an men, Gang oft agley. An’ lea’s us nought but grief an’ pain, for promised joy”.
The same message that I support in all endeavours, I’m sure that Sir Edmund Hillary when on
approaching the peak of Everest didn’t say I wish I hadn’t prepared so much!
Have a great week
Mike Brosnahan,

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