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Assessment and professional support

Assessment Online

  • This key community covers assessment in the classroom, effective use of evidence, and reporting to families and whānau. It offers news, assessment tools and resources, research, a glossary, FAQ, and related links.
  • The linked site Consider the Evidence promotes "evidence-driven decision making for secondary schools" and supports secondary educators in making best use of evidence to improve student achievement.
  • For a view of how assessment can best serve learning, see Directions for Assessment in New Zealand, a report by Michael Absolum, Lester Flockton, John Hattie, Rosemary Hipkins, and Ian Reid (also available as a Word or PDF file).

Education Review Office

In 2007, ERO published reports on schools’ effectiveness in the collection and use of assessment:

The New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA)

Follow links to the National Qualifications Framework, NCEA, and subject achievement standards.

Resourcing ideas


Students can go to this website to find useful, accurate, online information. Librarians from all over New Zealand are available each weekday between 1pm and 6pm to help students search online. To use AnyQuestions, students must be attending a New Zealand primary, intermediate, or secondary school or being home schooled.

National Library of New Zealand Services to Schools

Services to Schools supports educators by providing professional learning, advice, and quality resources. Check out the website for services currently available.

Education for Sustainability

This content on New Zealand Curriculum Online supports education for sustainability, which should be a starting point when looking for resources. 

Social Sciences Online

This site provides pages specific to the following senior subjects: business studies, classical studies, economics, geography, history, and senior social studies (see links under 'Senior secondary' on the landing page).

Social Sciences Online also provides PDFs of titles in the Ministry of Education series Building Conceptual Understandings in the Social Sciences (BCUSS). (These are listed in 'Featured content', right navigation.)

  • Approaches to building conceptual understandings
  • Approaches to social inquiry
  • Being part of a global community
  • Belonging and participating in society

Although the BCUSS series is designed to help teachers of levels 1–5, it is strongly recommended to senior social science teachers.

Facing the Future

This website from Western Washington University has resources for teachers and students – offers unit plans, student readings on various EfS topics. 

Ministry of Education websites

Ka Hikitia – Accelerating Success 2013–2017

Ka Hikitia – Accelerating Success 2013–2017 is a strategy to rapidly change how the education system performs so that all Māori students gain the skills, qualifications and knowledge they need to enjoy and achieve education success as Māori.

Key Competencies Online

This section of New Zealand Curriculum online offers specific guidance to school leaders and teachers on integrating the key competencies into the daily activities of the school and its teaching and learning programmes.

The New Zealand Curriculum Online

As well as the HTML version of The New Zealand Curriculum, this interactive site offers a variety of support and strategies, news updates, digital stories of schools’ experiences, and archived material relating to development of the curriculum.

Action Plan for Pacific Education 2020-2030

This site takes a closer look at the Pasifika Education Plan and the Pasifika Education Implementation Plan. It offers reflective questions, ideas, stories, and resources to support and inspire schools to make a difference for all Pasifika students.

Te Marautanga o Aotearoa

This site includes an English translation of the main sections of the marautanga. Only learning levels 1, 4, and 6 have been translated in the learning areas.

Te Tere Auraki

This Ministry of Education professional development strategy focuses on improving outcomes for Māori students in English-medium schools. This strategy supports four main projects: Te Kotahitanga, Te Kauhua, Ako Panuku, and Te Mana Kōrero.

BES (Iterative best evidence synthesis) programme

BES is a collaborative knowledge-building strategy designed to strengthen the evidence base that informs education policy and practice in New Zealand. See in particular:  Effective Pedagogy in Social Sciences/Tikanga ā Iwi Best Evidence Synthesis Iteration [BES] (2008).

Other government agency websites

Parliamentary Commissioner

The Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment has a number of publications and useful links for sustainability.

Climate change information New Zealand

This site offers information about New Zealand’s emissions, emissions trading, projected impacts, international negotiations and obligations, and overall approach to climate change.

Department of Conservation

The Department of Conservation provides information and resources to support conservation education programmes in schools, including field trips and activities. Specific resources for level 2 have been developed, including one at Mt Cook Aoraki. This is targeted at geography but includes an assessment activity for AS90811. See also the Waitaki unit. This has a biology angle about endangered species.

Landcare Manaaki Whenua

This environmental research centre specialises in sustainable management of land resources optimising primary production, enhancing biodiversity, increasing the resource efficiency of businesses, and conserving and restoring the natural assets of our communities. The website includes a comprehensive education section.

Ministry for Primary Industries Manatū Ahu Matua

This is a very useful website that has up-to-date information and resources.

Ministry for the Environment Manatū mō te Taiao

MfE’s mission is environmental stewardship, kaitiakitanga, for a prosperous New Zealand. Reference to the Resource Management Act 1991 (RMA) is included.

National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA)

NIWA is New Zealand’s leading provider of atmospheric and aquatic science. The website includes research, educational material, publications, maps, FAQ, teachers’ and students’ sections, and links to the various NIWA national centres and information about the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

Statistics New Zealand

Search for sustainability or population or explore the schools' corner.

Other websites

The following websites have been recommended as helpful by teachers. 

New Zealand organisations

Enviroschools Foundation

The foundation is a charitable trust that provides support and strategic direction for a nationwide environmental education programme. The Foundation’s vision is to foster a generation of innovative and motivated young people who instinctively think and act sustainably.

Environmental Defence Society

An environmental organisation comprised of resource management professionals who are committed to improving environmental outcomes.

Forest and Bird

Forest and Bird works to preserve New Zealand’s natural heritage and native species. They also co-ordinate hands-on restoration projects and educate people about environmental issues through their children’s club, Kiwi Conservation Club, publications, and public awareness campaigns.

Greenpeace New Zealand

Greenpeace has campaigned on many environmental issues over the years. This website is its New Zealand portal.


LEARNZ runs virtual field trips throughout the school year. This website includes background resources, student activities, teacher support, and curriculum ideas, and it prepares students for the field trips in the weeks leading up to the virtual field experience.

New Zealand Association for Environmental Education

NZAEE is a non-profit organisation working to promote and support environmental education, lifelong learning, and sustainable behaviour throughout New Zealand/Aotearoa. It provides information on a wide variety of environmental issues for individuals, schools, community groups, and businesses.

Sir Peter Blake Trust

The trust aims to help New Zealanders make a positive difference to the planet through activities that encourage environmental awareness and action. In partnerships with the Ministry of Education and NIWA, it administers the Sir Peter Blake Environmental Educator Award, and the Sea and Learn hands-on science shipboard education programme, and also supports young New Zealanders to attend the United Nations Environment Programme International Children’s Conference on the Environment, which is held every two years.

Trade Aid

Trade Aid offers free educational resources on social justice issues such as fair trade, international trading rules, business models, slavery, environmental justice, education, and gender equity. Curriculum-based units are available for levels 2–8. 

World Vision New Zealand

World Vision provides an educational experience for students about world issues. A variety of resources includes Internet connections, simulation games, posters, and NCEA internal assessments with teacher resource folders. Most of these are free to download, while others can be purchased online.

WWF New Zealand

WWF New Zealand promotes positive action to reduce the impacts of climate change, campaigns to stop dolphins and seabirds being caught by fishers, and educates the next generation about the importance of managing our precious environment more sustainably.


Change Agency Education and Training Institute

This agency is an independent activist education initiative working in the Australia-Pacific region to help people achieve social and environmental change. The resources include interesting readings, workshop tools, and key ideas for taking action that support development of key competencies. The agency’s byline is "listen deeply, reflect critically, strategise effectively, make change happen".

Friends of the Earth

This website links to a large variety of downloadable resources, many of which bring together social justice and environmental issues.

Amnesty International

Amnesty International campaigns on a wide range of issues to protect and defend human rights.


GreenChoices is about the choices we can make in our everyday lives to protect our environment, providing simple, direct information on green alternatives, which make a real, lasting difference.

International Geosphere-Biosphere Programme

This site includes an excellent education section with resource books on climate change and a downloadable executive summary.

Climate change

Ministry for the Environment

This section of the Ministry for the Environment website outlines implications of climate change for New Zealand, what New Zealand is doing about it, and their reporting commitments.

Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is the leading international body for the assessment of climate change. It was established by the  United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the  World Meteorological Organization (WMO) in 1988 to provide the world with a clear scientific view on the current state of knowledge in climate change and its potential environmental and socio-economic impacts. In the same year, the UN General Assembly  endorsed the action by WMO and UNEP in jointly establishing the IPCC

Climate change education

This site is supported by the American-based action group Focus the Nation and Climate Change Education.org, a group from the University of California, Berkeley. It is a portal site dedicated to education on climate change, offering a variety of K–12 resources, both interdisciplinary and subject specific, together with links to videos, experiments, and other sites of interest.

Ecological footprints

Disposable Planet

A six-part BBC series on sustainable development.

Greendex (National Geographic)

The Greendex is a quantitative consumer study of 17 000 consumers in a total of 17 countries (14 in 2008), who were asked about such behaviour as energy use and conservation, transportation choices, food sources, the relative use of green products versus traditional products, attitudes towards the environment and sustainability, and knowledge of environmental issues.

Food and gardening

Earthday Network

The Earthday Network works in partnership with the United States Green Building Council (USGBC) and the Clinton Foundation with the aim of greening all of America’s K–12 schools within a generation.

Garden Organic UK

This comprehensive site advocates for gardening in schools and provides a wealth of information on how to get started and the links that can be made to curriculum (UK) outcomes. This site includes stories from schools involved with the programme.

Kitchen Garden Foundation

This Australian site advocates for edible gardens in school but also provides resources for schools wanting to develop integrated programmes around food growing. The programmes develop numerous competencies among children and build understanding of the importance of food culturally as well as economically.


World Population Trends

This site offers a comprehensive selection of statistical data on every nation in the world, illustrated by wall charts, graphs, and tables. Themes include mortality and migration, fertility and family planning, and population and development.

Urban sustainability


This website supports the book Carfree Cities. This organisation aims to remove cars from central cities to make them safe and pleasant for pedestrians and to build communities where walking, cycling, and public transport predominate. See also Worldcarfree.net (below).

United Nations Environment Programme - Sustainable Cities 

The United Nations Environment Programme (UN Environment) is the leading global environmental authority that sets the global environmental agenda, promotes the coherent implementation of the environmental dimension of sustainable development within the United Nations system, and serves as an authoritative advocate for the global environment.

United Nations Human Settlements Programme: UN-HABITAT

This international agency provides support for urban change – they have many projects on the go that cover such topics as cities and climate change, social inclusion, and water and sanitation.


Worldcarfree.net is a clearinghouse of information from around the world on how to revitalise our towns and cities and create a sustainable future. This site offers resources for teachers, students, and other engaged citizens.

Youth support and action

Good magazine

A New Zealand guide to sustainable living.

Voices of Youth

UNICEF website



This is the largest online community of youth interested in global issues and creating positive change.


This American-based site offers both subscription and free access, and provides searchable resources for students undertaking research.

Sustainability case studies


The Body Shop

Green Globe

Sustainable Coastlines

Auckland City Council Environmental Programmes

Environment Canterbury Regional Council

Last updated April 9, 2024