Wellington, Oct 7 NZPA - Girls are 13 percent more likely than boys to leave school with at least an NCEA level 2 academic qualification, new Ministry of Education figures show.
The ministry's education counts website said future educational and job prospects were limited for those who left school without a level 2 NCEA qualification, and that qualification was attained last year by 74.1 percent of female school leavers, but only 65.7 percent of males.
NCEA level 2 is usually studied in Year 12 and replaced the old sixth form certificate.
Figures were also broken down into ethnicities and showed Asian students in 2009 had the highest proportion of school leavers attaining at least NCEA Level 2 (84.9 percent), which was 14 percent higher than the percentage of European/Pakeha getting that achievement.
Pasifika students achieved level 2 or higher at a rate of 59.7 percent, while Maori trailed with a 47.9 percent achievement rate.
However, long-term trends showed Maori school leavers had the largest proportional increase in attaining at least NCEA level 2, with rates having improved 84 percent since 2003.
In 2009, 50.1 percent of girls leaving school achieved a university entrance or NCEA level 3 standard, compared with 37.1 percent for boys, whereas with NCEA level 1, which is the equivalent of the old school certificate qualification, girls obtained it at a rate of 85.2 percent, compared to boys at 80.8 percent.
OECD figures showed that in 2008, New Zealanders with no qualifications had an unemployment rate over 42 percent higher than those whose highest qualification was a school qualification.
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