What You Need To Know Before Your Child Starts Secondary School

What You Need To Know Before Your Child Starts Secondary School

Author Debbie Knowles and Julie Mulcahy
Publisher Penguin
RRP $30.00
GT Issue 2009 T1
Reviewer Catherine George

What You Need To Know Before Your Child Starts Secondary School is a hand­book to help par­ents under­stand sec­ond­ary schools in New Zealand. The authors are exper­i­enced teach­ers and par­ents who now run an edu­ca­tional con­sultancy busi­ness, Springboard New Zealand.

The book aims to help provide answers to ques­tions about sec­ond­ary school life including:

  • How does NCEA work in simple terms?
  • Why do some schools use other forms of assessment?
  • How do I choose a sec­ond­ary school for my child: Single sex versus co-educational?
  • Teachers: who are they and what do they do?
  • What legal rights do schools have to dis­cip­line my child?
  • What learn­ing sup­port is avail­able and how do we find it?

The book is easy to read and writ­ten in a very friendly voice. The chapters are clearly divided into broad top­ics and the book is easy to nav­ig­ate to find the spe­cific inform­a­tion you need. It includes anec­dotal case study examples to illus­trate the chapter themes, and is packed full of tips and resources to access fur­ther inform­a­tion if your ques­tions haven’t been answered fully.

What You Need To Know Before Your Child Starts Secondary School would be invalu­able for par­ents of Year 7 and 8 stu­dents. As the par­ent of a stu­dent in Year 10 in 2009 I wish this had been pub­lished a year ago! However I still found a wealth of use­ful inform­a­tion, with the chapters on sys­tems of assess­ment and sub­ject choices being par­tic­u­larly interesting.

Highly recom­men­ded for par­ents and as a resource for school and com­munity libraries.

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