2019 December Report

This RSTAANZ Report outlines particular topics discussed at the executive committee meeting in Auckland, and of interest to members.


Review of Achievement Standards (RAS) pilot for Religious Studies

From the Ministry of Education:

Between late September 2019 and April 2020 we will undertake a two phase pilot process for the development of achievement standards and curriculum support resources with three NCEA subjects including Religious Studies.

This pilot is designed to test and refine the process for development of a new matrix, standards and assessment resources for our subject as well as training products and templates for the wider review.

A Religious Studies Subject Expert Group (SEG) consisting of 8 members has been set up for this pilot, with representatives from secondary and tertiary and includes teachers who bring a strong Pacific and Māori learner focus. There will also be NZQA input into the SEG.

The Religious Studies SEG met for two days recently to scope out the work ahead.

In phase 1, between September and December 2019, the Religious Studies SEG will develop a learning matrix which identifies the significant learning at curriculum levels 6 – 8. This learning matrix is a new step in the review and will help clarify the most important learning at each level across senior secondary. They will then use that learning matrix to develop a draft assessment matrix with four achievement standard outlines.

A key part of the SEG’s work will be the development of a fresh Teaching, Learning, and Assessment Guide (TLAG) which will capture their ideas about teaching and assessment programmes and the rationale for decisions made.

The sector will be invited to provide feedback on the draft phase 1 products from late November 2019 through late January 2020. This will be the first opportunity for the sector to comment on the direction the work is taking.

Phase 2 (between February and April 2020) will involve refining the phase 1 products and developing several assessment resources for each standard. These will be tested with the sector (around April) before NZQA verifies the entire assessment package ready for trialling in schools during 2021.


Subject Association AGM – 2019

The AGM took place on Thursday August 8th in Palmerston North. Andrew Murray presented the chair-person’s 2018-2019 annual report which was unanimously received.


Subject Associations Forum documents – 2019

This information comes from the gathering of all subject associations held in Wellington in April, at which Andrea Craig represented RSTAANZ.


Religious Studies – A Scholarship Subject from 2020!

It’s official! NZQA has approved RS for scholarship from 2020 and beyond. Thanks so much to all involved. It’s an exciting time for this important and valued subject.


The news feeds below are not as representative as we would like, but it is a start. Please, let us know of quality RSS feeds which should be added.

News Feeds

  • Popes, Saviours and the Queen
    on January 22, 2020 at 6:30 am

    The truth behind the hit new movie The Two Popes - it isn’t soccer, beers and a gentle ribbing between two old priests. Also, the Queen said 2019 was a bumpy year. How much did she lean on her faith to get her through? And the Japanese diplomat who defied orders and saved thousands of Jews during World War II.

  • A phoney victory
    on January 15, 2020 at 6:30 am

    British writer Peter Hitchens discusses his new book, The Phoney Victory, in which he argues that while the Nazi menace was real and genocidal, the Allies fought WWII in ways that were unethical and defied the standards they were pledged to protect.

  • Modern slavery and forced labour
    on January 8, 2020 at 6:30 am

    A conversation with UK's former Anti-slavery Commissioner, Kevin Hyland, about modern slavery, forced labour and human trafficking.

  • How can centre-left parties connect with voters who prize faith and values?
    on January 1, 2020 at 6:30 am

    In his new book Story of Our Country: Labor's Vision for Australia, author Adrian Pabst explores how centre-left parties should connect with voters who prize faith and values.

  • A strategy for Christians in a post-Christian nation
    on December 25, 2019 at 6:30 am

    In the last days of the election campaign, the culture war erupted over sexuality, religion and even hell. But in America it’s been raging for decades. A battle-scarred survivor has some advice on calming things down. Best-selling author Rod Dreher joined the program earlier this year.