The Auditor-General has announced a performance audit to examine how the Ministry of Education uses information to address inequities in education.
In a statement, the Office of the Auditor-General (OAG) said the audit would look at how the Ministry uses information to understand and address inequities in education for students in Years 1-13.
“In 2018, New Zealand was ranked 33rd out of 38 developed countries for its overall educational inequality because of inequities in student achievement,” the OAG said.
“This means that there can be wide variations in how well different groups of students do at school. For example, students in the same year at school can have as many as four years’ difference in what they’ve learned and what they need to know.”
It said the Ministry of Education needs high-quality information to address inequities and make effective policy, strategy, and investment decisions.
“Our work hopes to identify where and how the Ministry might improve the information it holds and how it makes use of that information.”
The audit team will look at how well the Ministry of Education uses information to support more equitable outcomes for students in Years 1-13 at Māori-medium and English-medium schools and Te Aho o Te Kura Pounamu.
To do this, they will look at how well the Ministry of Education:
- understands the main reasons for the differences in students’ learning;
- prepares, targets, and prioritises work to reduce these differences; and
- ensures that its work is effective.
“We will also look at how the Ministry of Education works with schools, other government departments, and other agencies to address inequities in education,” the Office said.
“Our work will result in a report to Parliament, which we will also publish on our website. We hope to identify where and how the Ministry might improve the information it holds and how it makes use of that information.”
The OAG expects to complete this work in mid-2023.