YEA Data Points

Learning thorough lockdowns

Learning thorough lockdowns – it is more about reengagement than disengagement.

“NCEA students were really struggling last year” (ERO, 2021)

The Education Review Office (ERO, who surveyed 67 school across Aotearoa in 2020 and followed up with 27 over the most recent national lockdown in 2021) reported that at the end of Term 3 in 2020, only a quarter of students (24%) said they were keeping up with their schoolwork – they were keen to learn more about how to stay on track. In June this year just under two-thirds (62 %) of NCEA students agreed they would be able to learn from home.

ERO also reported that around 20% of Year 11-13 students were feeling positive about their learning leading up to the 2020-2021 summer break. In Term 2 of 2021, this had only increased to 36% of Year 11-13 students feeling positive about their learning progress (compared to just over half of Year 9-10 students). A large number of schools (66% of schools reported) were also having concerns about student progress and achievement.

“Auckland students may be feeling more anxious about Covid-19 and could find it more difficult to re-engage when they are back at school”

Tamaki Makaurau has been affected by the COVID 19 virus more than the rest of Aotearoa if the prevalence of the COVID -19 virus in the community and the frequency of lockdowns were to be considered. Research carried out in Tamaki Makaurau by Carven & Chen (June 2021) from the Martin Jenkins COVID Youth research found 59% of youth interviewed aged 15 – 24 years of age (223 students in total) from secondary and tertiary education found that online learning was detrimental to their education progress. The switch to online learning seems to effect secondary aged students in Tamaki Makaurau more severely when compared to their tertiary education peers. Over half of the secondary students interviewed stated that they learnt less when their learning was online.

Aside from issues with a lack of devices (In Aotearoa – 17% percent of Māori students and 15% of Pasifika students said they would not have access to a digital device or were unsure, compared to only 4% of New Zealand European students) or access to an internet connection contributing to students’ emotions on online learning there is also student wellbeing to be considered.

ERO also reported that:

37% percent of Auckland senior secondary students felt safe from Covid-19, compared to 58% of senior secondary students outside of Auckland

25 % of teachers in Auckland felt their students were engaged, compared to 42 %of teachers outside of Auckland

85% of principals in low decile schools in Auckland were concerned about their students’ learning, compared to 77 % of principals in low decile schools outside Auckland.

Student attendance data from the Ministry of Education and ERO both show that it is not attendance post lockdown that is our biggest concern, yet engagement in school once students have returned that we should be focusing on. ERO has prepared resources to aide in the process.