An open letter from AMA to Auckland Schools

Kia ora Auckland Mathematics/Pāngarau teachers,

NZQA have communicated to schools across Aotearoa about contingencies for assessing the MCAT this year. The Auckland region could well be in a position where schools cannot run MCAT exams on the revised dates.


The AMA exec does not have any information other than what has been communicated to Principals Nominees and that posted on the NZQA news feed, but we can have a role in keeping members well informed on developments. The AMA would like to see if we, as a community, can support each other in planning for alternative assessment options for this standard. 


A Summary of what is known:

  • If Auckland is back in Covid alert level 2 prior to the assessment dates (28th and 30th of September), 
    • we are encouraged to run the MCAT exam
  • If Auckland schools cannot run the MCAT exam, teachers will need to derive grades in other ways, but this could be done in term 4 up till the date November 22nd.
    • Schools will have some flexibility in when, and how, they could assess students.
    • There is also flexibility in how the evidence comes about.
      Evidence collection could take the form of a formal test in term 4, a formal test that had been done earlier in the year, or could come from a wide variety of opportunities for students to demonstrate their learning (documented by teachers).
    • A secure NZAMT assessment would be made available to all schools should the need arise.


While some schools may take all of this in their stride, other schools may feel some support would be helpful. We offer two opportunities to draw on the collective thinking of our community:


  1. A discussion document where teachers can post questions, suggestions and concerns, and also respond to other teachers’ points. Please contribute to this document.
  2. An online meeting to discuss plans. This would be through Zoom on Wednesday 8th of September at 3:30pm. We expect some schools would be able to share their contingency plans for MCAT assessment.
    Please register for this session through this form


We are confident that, working together, we can make the best of this situation.


Ngā mihi

Auckland Mathematical Association Executive

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